Jane Kennedy, the junior minister responsible for the Lord Chancellor's Department, announced publication of a report proposing most other organisations in the voluntary, private and public sectors take over other aspects of trust office's work.
The remaining functions of the office - monitoring the provision of services and ensuring the needs of vulnerable people are met - should be split between the Court Service and the Official Solicitor's Office.
The report proposed the PTO explore ways the Inland Revenue could assist in ensuring the submission of private receivers' accounts within weeks of becoming due compared with months now.
The Court of Protection would review cases, with a power to replace receivers, and accountants and solicitors would take over cases where the PTO acts as receiver.
Kennedy said Lord Chancellor Lord Irvine had welcomed the report and 'agrees that radical change is required'. He is to 'explore the review's recommendations in a programme of change for the PTO' and 'will want to be satisfied that reform does not entail placing a greater financial burden on some of the poorest and most vulnerable members of society'.
Decisions will be announced in February aimed at ensuring the interests of PTO clients are fully protected. The Treasury, in a formal response, accepted the main criticisms of the PAC calling for 'a fundamental programme of change'.
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