What is a committee?
A committee (pronounced “caw-mi-tay”) is a person appointed by the BC Supreme Court to make personal, medical, legal, or financial decisions for someone who is mentally incapable and cannot make those decisions. A person may be mentally incapable because of disease, accident, use of drugs, or age. If there is an Enduring Power of Attorney or Representation Agreement in place, a Committee may not be necessary.
A committee of the person makes personal and medical decisions for someone who is not mentally capable, including decisions about where the person will live.
A committee of the estate makes financial and legal decisions for someone who is not mentally capable.
To become a committee, you must apply to the BC Supreme Court to be appointed by an order under the Patients Property Act. The cost of the application to the court (including legal fees) is usually in the range of $4,000 to $8,000 and is usually paid by the incapable person’s estate. The entire procedure may take six weeks or longer depending on the length of time taken to gather the information necessary for the documentation.
Committees must keep detailed records of all the assets, liabilities, and money coming in and going out of the person’s estate. They must also report to the Public Guardian and Trustee.
If you believe that a family member or friend can no longer make decisions to properly manage their affairs or personal care, and therefore needs to have a committee appointed, contact Ratcliff’s Estates Team to assist with the process.