Search the Register

We will keep the details of certain decision support arrangements in a searchable register. This section tells you about the register and who can search it. The register will only become active when arrangements are registered by us.

We will maintain a register of certain decision support arrangements. You can access information about this at the following link decision support arrangements. Each register will allow certain professionals, organisations and members of the public to confirm whether a decision support arrangement exists, the status of the arrangement and the content of the arrangement.

There are five different decision support arrangements for people who have, or may have, challenges with their capacity and who may need support to make certain decisions. These arrangements are based on the different types of support that a person needs to make a specific decision at a specific time.

We will keep a searchable register of the following arrangements:

  • Co-decision-making agreements
  • Decision-making representation orders
  • Enduring powers of attorney

We will also keep a record of every request made to search a register.

We will not keep a searchable register for the following arrangements:

  • Advance healthcare directive
  • Decision-making assistance agreement

To verify one of these arrangements you will need to check the hard copy of the arrangement with the person or their decision supporter.

Why will people need to search the register?

People or organisations may need access to the register to make sure that a decision support arrangement is in place. Because of privacy and data protection laws, organisations such as banks and hospitals may need to confirm that a decision support arrangement is in place before talking to a decision supporter or allowing a decision supporter to exercise their authority.

Some people may also be concerned that a decision support arrangement includes decisions about property, assets or other financial affairs that they themselves have an interest in.

Who can access the register?

There are three categories of people who will be able to access the register:

  • A specific recognised organisation that has been approved by us
  • A specific person or professional that has been approved by us
  • A member of the public who can demonstrate that they have a legitimate interest in searching the register

The Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth have made rules (which are called regulations) that say which organisations and persons can apply to us to be approved.

Find out more about these regulations.

Searching as an approved organisation

Certain organisations will be able to apply to us to access the register when it becomes active.

This includes organisations such as banks, nursing homes and other residential health and social care services.

The Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth have made rules (which are called regulations) that say which organisations can apply to access the register.

Read more about Searching as an approved organisation

Searching as an approved person

Certain individuals who are registered with a professional body will be able to apply to us to access the register when it becomes active.

This includes individuals such as lawyers, accountants and registered health and social care professionals.

The Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth have made rules (which are called regulations) that say which people can apply to access the register.

Read more about Searching as an approved person

Fees for searching the register

There will be some fees for searching the register and getting a certified copy of a decision support arrangement. Fees vary depending on the level of access you need. Where applicable, the fee must be paid before access is granted.

There will be no cost for a search to verify the existence and status of an arrangement.

The Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth have set certain fees for searching the register.

Find out more about on our Fees page

General searches

Any person will be able make a general request to search the register when it becomes active. The request must be made in writing and must show us that they have a good reason to search the register and to be given details of the decision support arrangement.

We will review each request and decide whether or not to grant the person access to the register.

Read more about General searches