How do I apply to be appointed as Deputy for someone who loses Mental Capacity without making a Lasting Power of Attorney in Singapore?

application process deputy singapore

What is a Deputy?

As mentioned in a previous post, if you don’t make an LPA in Singapore and lose mental capacity, someone will still have to be appointed to help you make decisions. This person or persons will be appointed by the court to do so, and are referred to as a deputy or deputies.

The deputy is given a wide range of powers similar to that of a donee, and generally has the authority to make decisions for the mentally-incapcitated person in relation to his personal welfare or property.

Who can be a Deputy?

A deputy has to satisfy the requirements of the Mental Capacity Act in Singapore. Generally, a deputy has to be at least 21 years of age and has to consent to being a deputy.

As the court appoints the deputy, it will consider the following factors in determining whether they should appoint a deputy:

  • The nature of the relationship between the person applying to be a deputy and the mentally incapacitated person.
  • Whether the person applying to be a deputy is suitable.
  • The kind of decisions that will have to be made.
  • Whether the deputyship is for decisions with respect to property & affairs or personal welfare matters.

It is usually common for the court to appoint close family members or friends to be deputies. However, professionals can also be appointed as decision-makers for those who lose mental capacity.

What is the process to apply to be appointed as a Deputy?

(1)  The originating summons to be filed for the appointment of a deputy or deputies shall be in Form 217 in Appendix A of the Family Justice Courts Practice Directions.

(2)  It must be stated clearly in the originating summons whether the declaration sought in respect of the mentally incapacitated person’s (“P”) lack of capacity concerns either P’s personal welfare or P’s property and affairs or both.

(3)  The plaintiff or applicant should ensure that the originating summons, the supporting affidavit and the doctor’s affidavit exhibiting the medical report are consistent as to whether P lacks capacity in relation to his personal welfare or his property and affairs or both.

(4)  If there is more than one deputy sought to be appointed, the originating summons must state whether the deputies are to act jointly or jointly and severally.

(5)  The powers sought for the deputies are to be drafted appropriately to suit the purpose of each application.

(6)  Any other specific orders or reliefs that are required on the particular facts of each case are to be included.

(7)  The affidavit to be filed by the plaintiff or applicant and all proposed deputies in support of the application for the appointment of a deputy or deputies shall be in Form 218 in Appendix A of the Family Justice Courts Practice Directions.

(8)  In the case of applications for direct payment of P’s hospital and/or nursing home charges from P’s funds or P’s insurance and where no deputy is to be appointed, the affidavit to be filed by the plaintiff or applicant in support of the application shall be in Form 219 in Appendix A of the Family Justice Courts Practice Directions.

(9) A doctor’s affidavit exhibiting a medical report has to be attached and the medical report shall —

(a) distinguish clearly between observations or conclusions based on information given to the doctor and those that are based on the doctor’s examination of P;

(b)  contain a clear opinion as to whether P lacks capacity in relation to the matters specified in the application;

(c)  be current and shall not be made more than 6 months before the date of the application;

(d)  contain a clear opinion on P’s prognosis; and

(e)  The affidavit and medical report to be filed by P’s doctor in support of the application for the appointment of a deputy or deputies shall be in Form 224 in Appendix A of the Family Justice Courts Practice Directions.

(10) If the plaintiff or applicant seeks to apply for the appointment of a successor deputy or deputies, the application must also be accompanied by an affidavit of the proposed successor deputy or deputies in Form 220 in Appendix A of the Family Justice Courts Practice Directions.


If you'd like to hire an affordable, vetted Singapore lawyer to make a Lasting Power of Attorney or to assist in the Appointment of Deputy process, get in touch with us here.