Supportive attorney appointments

We decide on matters about supportive attorney appointments.

The supportive attorney appointment was introduced with the Powers of Attorney Act 2014. It supports the right of people with disability Definition A condition that restricts a person's physical or mental capacity to interact in their environment. Disability can be temporary, situational or permanent. to make their own decisions about things that affect them.

Definitions of principal and attorney

In supportive attorney appointment, the principal is the person who has an attorney supporting them as they make decisions.

The supportive attorney is the person appointed to support the principal in their decision-making.

For more information about how to make powers of attorney, contact the Office of the Public Advocate

What we can do

VCAT can hear and decide applications about:

  • an attorney's power under the supportive attorney appointment, including whether the supportive attorney is complying with the terms of the appointment or exercising undue influence over the principal
  • cancelling (revoking) or suspending the supportive attorney appointment
  • varying the effect of a supportive attorney appointment
  • the principal’s decision making capacity for matters to which the supportive attorney appointment applies.

Before you apply

You can apply to VCAT if you are the principal, supportive attorney, the nearest relative of the principal or anyone who has a special interest in the affairs of the principal. Complete the application form, lodge it with VCAT and send a copy to the people you named in the application form. There is no fee payable for the application.

Fees 

There are no application or hearing Definition The time and place at which VCAT hears the parties argue their case and makes a decision. fees.

Do I need a lawyer or professional representative?

You do not need to have legal or other professional representation to appear at VCAT. If you wish to be represented by a lawyer or a professional advocate, usually you must ask for VCAT's permission.

Find free or low-cost legal services that may be able to assist you.

Need help with your application?

VCAT cannot give you legal advice. Seek legal help if you are unsure about your legal options. The following services may be able to help you:

Decide who pays the costs of representation

If you are a supportive attorney who is a party Definition A person or organisation directly involved in a VCAT case, including a person or organisation that has brought the case before VCAT or who is defending claims made against them. to a power of attorney hearing at VCAT you may want to be represented by a lawyer. You must decide whether this is a cost you should pay personally or whether it is a reasonable expense that can be paid from the finances of the person who appointed you.

Access and privacy

VCAT hearings and files are usually public.

VCAT has limited authority to restrict who can access cases and files but, in certain circumstances, you can apply for confidentiality. For more about applying for confidentiality.

Legislation that applies to this type of case