Court of Protection Fee Earner - Grade B/C (Manchester)
- Job Type
- Full time
We have a new vacancy for an experienced file handler to join our award-winning Court of Protection team (property & financial affairs) in Manchester.
The vacancy is due to continued growth of new work in our Court of Protection team and so a new file handler would be managing new deputyships from receipt of deputy appointment Order, with exciting opportunities to progress as the role and team continues to grow.
The Department & Work:
Our Court of Protection (CoP) department is nationally recognised as one of the largest, specialist and most diversified CoP teams in the country. All team members are experts, specialising solely in property and financial affairs CoP work, going above and beyond for their clients. Our team’s sustained growth of both caseload and team size as well as our client and staff retention is testament to our proven level of experience and success. With this comes ample opportunities for new starters’ personal development and progression, as well as gaining exposure to highly varied, interesting and complex CoP work.
The team work with almost all types of vulnerable adults, including those with the most profound injuries or illnesses and significantly reduced life expectancy. This includes mental health illness, learning difficulties age-related degenerative conditions such as dementia, acquired brain injuries, traumatic brain injuries, substance abuse, psychological injury and post-traumatic stress disorder, disabilities as a result of clinical or other negligence, birth injuries such as palsy and other cerebral hypoxia. Our deputy and PI trust appointments range from multifaceted, complex and high value matters- many of our appointments involve estates between £5 to 75 million, numerous pieces of litigation, business interests, complex jurisdictional issues in cross border disputes, financial abuse and reporting to the Court.
There are four deputies in the team- Megan Christie-Copeland, the Head of CoP department, Andrew Cusworth, an OPG Panel deputy specialising in cross-border, financial abuse and local authority deputyships and both Katherine Smith and Rebecca Brown, deputies specialising in deputyships for children and adults with multi-million-pound, personal injury/clinical negligence compensation awards. Both our COP department and our partners are ranked in both UK Chambers and Legal 500 as a top firm for CoP and we won awards for ‘COP team of the year’ nationally and regionally at the Manchester Legal Awards in 2022.
The department are dedicated members of numerous professional bodies, including; the Society of Trust and Estate (STEP) Practitioners and Solicitors for the Elderly (SFE), Court User Group (CuG), Law Society Private Client Section, the Association of Women Solicitors (AWS), Birmingham Solicitors’ Group (BSG), as well as being a founding member for the Professional Deputies Forum (PDF), and having a founding member, Vice Chair and Strategy and Operations Manager for the Court of Protection Practitioners’ Association (CoPPA).
A snapshot of team members’ feedback about their CoP department is: “Everyone is friendly, supportive and there’s great team camaraderie… Great breadth of knowledge and experience, everyone willing to assist and share their knowledge... Clients are clearly priority and at the forefront of everything the team does… What we have in this team is very special- it’s not the industry norm from the people to the standard of work…Brilliant team to work in…Great work and social life balance…Despite the size of the team we have that close team feeling and team spirit… We’re listened to and supported by the team leaders and managers… Warm and welcoming team ethos… Very open to sharing ideas and receptive to new ways of thinking… Great quality work, no two days are the same…”
The role will involve:
- Running your own varied caseload of deputyships either arising from 1) personal injury or clinical negligence claims (pre- and post-settlement) and/or 2) deputyships from the OPG panel and local authority.
- Carrying out Grade B/C work on a broad range of deputyships matters, supporting Grade B senior file handlers and working closely with the deputies.
- Delegating to and being supported by Grade D paralegals.
- Working within a sub-team of circa 6 (2 other file handlers and 3 paralegals to support) within the wider department.
- Supporting and protecting client’s needs on a wide range of issues including financial planning, management of their funds, assets, property and care arrangements.
- Working with families, therapists, case managers, social services and local authorities, care providers, government bodies, benefits agencies, financial institutions, and other professional bodies.
The successful candidate should be able to demonstrate:
- 3+ years’ experience in COP, ideally running their own caseload. They can be a solicitor/legal executive/experienced paralegal/other experience as a file handler.
- A commitment to excellent client care and court of protection work.
- Able to set and manage client’s budgets and cash flow effectively.
- Excellent IT skills particularly with experience in Word, Excel and Outlook.
- Ability to communicate well orally and in writing, including dealing directly with clients.
- Strong attention to detail.
- Exceptional organisational skills.
- Strong team working ethic.
Working for JMW
As well as a rewarding career, JMW offer staff many other opportunities and benefits, including:
- A minimum of 25 days' annual leave plus office closure between Christmas and New Year
- A one hour early finish, one Friday per month
- Two days a year to do charitable work
- The opportunity to get involved in sports teams, hobby clubs, and social events
- Access to our Employee Assistance Programme and trained Mental Health First Aiders
- Annual promotions process open to all staff
More information about our benefits and company culture can be found on the careers home page.