Your browser isn't supported
It looks like you're using an old web browser. To get the most out of the site and to ensure guides display correctly, we suggest upgrading your browser now. Download the latest:

Welcome to the MSE Forums

We're home to a fantastic community of MoneySavers but anyone can post. Please exercise caution & report spam, illegal, offensive or libellous posts/messages: click "report" or email forumteam@.

Search
  • FIRST POST
    • Rags2riches
    • By Rags2riches 10th Sep 17, 3:29 PM
    • 42Posts
    • 11Thanks
    Rags2riches
    How to deal with a brother TAKEN over parents finances..
    • #1
    • 10th Sep 17, 3:29 PM
    How to deal with a brother TAKEN over parents finances.. 10th Sep 17 at 3:29 PM
    For several years my brother has been involved with my parents finances. Originally this came about with simple tips any forum member would be proud of... but earlier in the year I discovered he has completely taken over their finances and spent on their cards.

    During this time my parents:
    • Have discovered they have close to £140k in credit cards and overdrafts. They thought it was £30k.
    • Remortgaged their home to raise funds for an extension which never materialised. £40k has simply gone.
    • Cashed in life savings of around £20k, also long since gone.
    • Forced to sell their family home and move into rented to repay their interest-only mortgage.
    • Been subject to a complex banking arrangement involving around 30 different current accounts, so they find it difficult to keep track of their income.
    • Have had pensions of around £50k whilst living a very modest lifestyle on a tight budget.

    During this time my brother had complete access to their accounts. He's borrowed near to £35k from them but also been treating their accounts like they are his own, spending on their cards and causing confusion for my parents trying to work out who's spending was who's.

    Current situation:
    • I’ve tried approaching him directly but he refuses to speak to anyone other than our parents, completely cutting me out of his life.
    • I’ve tried putting them in touch with debt charities and provided details of IFA’s they could approach but he has created an ‘illusion’ that they are in control of their own finances and he really is just trying to help them.

    He has alluded:
    • There is no problem.
    • There is no need for anybody else to be involved and should anybody become involved this proves how ungrateful they are to him… he will be 'done with them', which they clearly do not want.
    • That they are incapable of looking after their own money, without his assistance, stating that financial advisers can’t do as good a job as he can and are only out to get paid.

    My concern is that he is still ‘assisting’ them and it appears they cannot ‘break-free’. They are about to receive £55k from the proceeds of their sale.

    What help is available?
    Last edited by Rags2riches; 10-09-2017 at 5:57 PM.
Page 5
    • Article50
    • By Article50 13th Sep 17, 2:18 PM
    • 25 Posts
    • 22 Thanks
    Article50
    Regardless of how many interest bearing accounts there are the rates will be minuscule compared to credit card interest rates. The credit cards must be the priority though I don't see how that much credit can be accrued without credit being declined somewhere even at £20 grand a card which is a high level for the income.

    Even as you say your brother "will be done" with your parents he has nothing to bargain with, I recall he doesn't work therefore will not make any positive contribution,presumably pays no rent,keep etc so his presence in the house is worthless in addition to being a woeful apparent liability. The only one with anything to lose is your brother everyone especially your parents gain if he walks,call his bluff.
    Last edited by Article50; 13-09-2017 at 2:26 PM.
    • annandale
    • By annandale 13th Sep 17, 2:23 PM
    • 760 Posts
    • 1,678 Thanks
    annandale
    I find it extremely hard to believe that your brother has convinced your parents that they've gone from having 30k debt to 140k debt and convinced them that they've spent this when hes got some of the cards.

    Complex systems? Spreadsheets? A debit on one and a credit on the other?

    The very bottom line is you are expecting people to believe that your mum and dad have been convinced that they've racked up an additional 110k in spending without knowing about it!

    The debits and credits amounts to the paying down the debt and not the actual racking it up so how exactly has your brother managed to convince them that they've spent all this extra money when they actually haven't?

    Your debits and credits only account for what he's saying he's paying off on their behalf. It doesn't account for how he's managed to convince them that they've racked up the debt in the first place.

    So how has he convinced them that they've spent this money in the first place?

    I think if I spent an extra 110 grand I'd actually remember spending it in the first place to actually build the debt to the point its currently at
    • annandale
    • By annandale 13th Sep 17, 2:28 PM
    • 760 Posts
    • 1,678 Thanks
    annandale
    If I took over my mums bank account. Irrespective of whether there were 30 of them or I had spreadsheets I think she would remember racking up 110k of extra debt plus you say they've also handed him 35k.

    Are you seriously saying that your mum can't remember whether she's spent significant sums of cash or if its been your brother. To the tune of 110k? And normally when people do spend money they have something to show for it

    Youve spoken about debits, credits and confusion about how the money has been spent. But youve also said that hes got some of the cards.

    So, how has your brother managed to convince your mother and father that theyve spent all that money when they actually haven't when he's holding some of the cards

    Are you honestly trying to say that your mum cant remember spending an extra 110k that she didnt actually spend and has absolutely zero to show for it?

    Shes confused to that extent that she cant remember spending that large sum of money?

    Spreadsheet and illusion debit and credit doesnt account for how hes managed to spend all that cash in the first place.

    This story has way too many holes in it
    Last edited by annandale; 13-09-2017 at 2:52 PM.
    • annandale
    • By annandale 13th Sep 17, 3:00 PM
    • 760 Posts
    • 1,678 Thanks
    annandale
    The credit cards must be the priority though I don't see how that much credit can be accrued without credit being declined somewhere even at £20 grand a card which is a high level for the income.
    Completely agree. Also, unless you have a direct debit or a standing order to pay off a min payment at some point you are going to have to see statements to see how much you owe and as such you'll also see how much youve been spending.
    • lincroft1710
    • By lincroft1710 13th Sep 17, 3:45 PM
    • 9,635 Posts
    • 7,624 Thanks
    lincroft1710
    I would seriously recommend the OP read through this thread to understand how far this could escalate

    http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=4764044
    Originally posted by AndyBSG
    You mean this thread could run to 27 pages over 2 years and still no resolution?

    As others have said, it seems difficult to believe that the OP's brother has racked up £140K worth of debt without anything tangible to show for it. Or perhaps he has something tangible, and is hiding it.
    Last edited by lincroft1710; 13-09-2017 at 3:49 PM.
    • Malthusian
    • By Malthusian 13th Sep 17, 4:38 PM
    • 2,884 Posts
    • 4,123 Thanks
    Malthusian
    You mean this thread could run to 27 pages over 2 years and still no resolution?
    Originally posted by lincroft1710
    There was a resolution a few years ago - the OP's father died having never seen the money again. The police did not prosecute due to lack of evidence. There were a few more pages after that as the OP in that thread quite understandably came back for further moral support. I hope no-one minds me describing the facts so bluntly but it seems unlikely the OP in that thread (who has not posted since Jan 2016) will see this.

    As others have said, it seems difficult to believe that the OP's brother has racked up £140K worth of debt without anything tangible to show for it.
    That one's easy - online gambling. The OP was asked that and said he didn't believe so, which is another way of saying he doesn't know.
    • annandale
    • By annandale 13th Sep 17, 5:19 PM
    • 760 Posts
    • 1,678 Thanks
    annandale
    But that still doesn't account for the brother trying to convince the parents that they've spent some of this. How can you be conned into believing you've spent 140k when you haven't?
    • Rags2riches
    • By Rags2riches 13th Sep 17, 11:24 PM
    • 42 Posts
    • 11 Thanks
    Rags2riches
    There was a resolution a few years ago - the OP's father died having never seen the money again. The police did not prosecute due to lack of evidence. There were a few more pages after that as the OP in that thread quite understandably came back for further moral support. I hope no-one minds me describing the facts so bluntly but it seems unlikely the OP in that thread (who has not posted since Jan 2016) will see this.



    That one's easy - online gambling. The OP was asked that and said he didn't believe so, which is another way of saying he doesn't know.
    Originally posted by Malthusian
    There is nothing to suggest online gambling. My parents live a frugile lifestyle. There have been some minor purchases for household furniture but thats about it, and well within the tolerence for thier income level.
    Last edited by Rags2riches; 13-09-2017 at 11:28 PM.
    • Rags2riches
    • By Rags2riches 13th Sep 17, 11:30 PM
    • 42 Posts
    • 11 Thanks
    Rags2riches
    But that still doesn't account for the brother trying to convince the parents that they've spent some of this. How can you be conned into believing you've spent 140k when you haven't?
    Originally posted by annandale
    I know. Especially bearing in mind that doesn't include funds released from a remortage or savings!

    There are clearly transactions to cards they've never had. What is Adams Mastercard and Curve?
    • Gingernutty
    • By Gingernutty 14th Sep 17, 12:00 AM
    • 3,417 Posts
    • 10,320 Thanks
    Gingernutty
    Curve is not looking good.

    https://www.imaginecurve.com/m-curve/
    Don't know what I'm doing, but doing it anyway...
    • annandale
    • By annandale 14th Sep 17, 12:30 AM
    • 760 Posts
    • 1,678 Thanks
    annandale
    Is there nothing that can be done because hes clearly opened cards without their knowledge? Surely that is fraud?

    Surely opening a card in someone elses name and using it is fraud? The police surely should be involved due to this, there's a difference between using cards because someone has given you the info and opening and using a card in someone elses name?

    http://www.actionfraud.police.uk/ID
    • Article50
    • By Article50 14th Sep 17, 8:13 AM
    • 25 Posts
    • 22 Thanks
    Article50
    There is nothing to suggest online gambling. My parents live a frugile lifestyle. There have been some minor purchases for household furniture but thats about it, and well within the tolerence for thier income level.
    Originally posted by Rags2riches
    Hi Rags...I didnt mean the parents I meant the brother, the rate money is being burnt it has to be something like that.
    • Pollycat
    • By Pollycat 14th Sep 17, 8:27 AM
    • 17,628 Posts
    • 44,866 Thanks
    Pollycat
    Is there nothing that can be done because hes clearly opened cards without their knowledge? Surely that is fraud?

    Surely opening a card in someone elses name and using it is fraud? The police surely should be involved due to this,
    there's a difference between using cards because someone has given you the info and opening and using a card in someone elses name?

    http://www.actionfraud.police.uk/ID
    Originally posted by annandale
    Is there much point in that if the Mother is just going to back the OP's brother up - as she did when the OP got them involved previously?
    • Pollycat
    • By Pollycat 14th Sep 17, 8:28 AM
    • 17,628 Posts
    • 44,866 Thanks
    Pollycat
    There is nothing to suggest online gambling. My parents live a frugile lifestyle. There have been some minor purchases for household furniture but thats about it, and well within the tolerence for thier income level.
    Originally posted by Rags2riches
    So where has the money gone?
    • Article50
    • By Article50 14th Sep 17, 9:02 AM
    • 25 Posts
    • 22 Thanks
    Article50
    Has anyone looked at all the credit card statements and all the other bank statements ?

    In the meantime I would strongly suggest your mother opens another bank account and at least that way she would know about all access to the account bearing in mind the £55 grand is shortly to appear somewhere to be "whisked away". I am assuming your mother/parents account is the main recipient of funds.
    • Malthusian
    • By Malthusian 14th Sep 17, 9:19 AM
    • 2,884 Posts
    • 4,123 Thanks
    Malthusian
    There is nothing to suggest online gambling.
    Originally posted by Rags2riches
    Yes there is. £140,000 has disappeared without trace and you don't know where it's gone. If the brother had suddenly started driving a Lamborghini and taking four luxury holidays a year you'd've said.

    When you see in the news that someone has been stealing tens or hundreds of thousands of pounds from their parents or clients or their employer, the thief invariably blames online gambling.

    If it hasn't been blown on online poker then where's the money?

    Is there nothing that can be done because hes clearly opened cards without their knowledge?
    by annandale
    If the mother tells the police that they were opened with her knowledge, as she did last time, then no there isn't, other than wasting police time.
    • Rags2riches
    • By Rags2riches 14th Sep 17, 10:14 AM
    • 42 Posts
    • 11 Thanks
    Rags2riches
    If the brother had suddenly started driving a Lamborghini and taking four luxury holidays a year you'd've said.
    Originally posted by Malthusian
    This rings alarm bells as there are clear similarities. I wish there was a property somewhere in the background but I doubt there is.
    Last edited by Rags2riches; 14-09-2017 at 1:18 PM.
    • Rags2riches
    • By Rags2riches 14th Sep 17, 9:49 PM
    • 42 Posts
    • 11 Thanks
    Rags2riches
    Has anyone looked at all the credit card statements and all the other bank statements ?
    Originally posted by Article50
    Yes but there seems to be accounts they aren't even aware of.
    Last edited by Rags2riches; 17-09-2017 at 10:55 AM.
    • Ames
    • By Ames 15th Sep 17, 12:28 AM
    • 16,260 Posts
    • 28,400 Thanks
    Ames
    Could you perhaps engineer a situation where they have to look at how much they have? Maybe point to the news about Equifax being hacked and UK customers possibly being affected, so it's really important that you go though their finances with them right now to make sure there's nothing suspicious.

    That's assuming they have access to it all themselves though. If they don't, I'm sure there's something in the bank T&Cs about it, would they be the type of people to be scared of breaking rules like that?
    Unless I say otherwise 'you' means the general you not you specifically.

    Reading the alphabet in 2017. 21/100
    ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ
    • Rags2riches
    • By Rags2riches 15th Sep 17, 12:48 AM
    • 42 Posts
    • 11 Thanks
    Rags2riches
    I've had plenty of suggestions which I am very grateful for.

    It it appears options are limited, without the co-operation of mum. It seems she wants to take the path of least resistence so unlikely to do anything in her or my dads interests. As experience has shown when talking doesn't work and intevention takes place - little changes.

    So it seems to me I am deliberating between:

    a) I ignore it, as many of you have suggested. I'm not certain what sort of relationship I could have going forward. It would seem very fake, knowing whats going on in the background. There is always hope that my mum will kick my brother out of her accounts and take on some personal responsibility for their finances, but to date she has already had ample chance to do so which she hasn't taken.

    The fact my brother isn't willing to talk clearly demonstarates to me how irresponsible and lacking in emotional intelligence he is. He chose to intervene in their finances. Nobody forced him to. Whilst doing so they've suffered a large amount of losses. That to me shows he demonstrates a lack of financial accumen. Notwithstanding as an ex-bankrupt himself, I've witnessed him taking poor financial judgement in the past. Would you walk away knowing this person has access to their accounts?

    b) Report it to Social Services - and let them intervene. This is likely to put immediate pressure on my relationship with them even further - and may amount to no further action taking place.

    I very much doubt anybody can recover their losses. But I'm struggling to work out the best way forward to maintain a two-way relationship with my parents from this point forward?

    Are there any options?
    Last edited by Rags2riches; 15-09-2017 at 12:54 AM.
Welcome to our new Forum!

Our aim is to save you money quickly and easily. We hope you like it!

Forum Team Contact us

Live Stats

1,350Posts Today

6,121Users online

Martin's Twitter
  • Shana tova umetuka - a sweet Jewish New Year to all celebrating. I won't be online the rest of t'week, as I take the time to be with family

  • Dear Steve. Please note doing a poll to ask people's opinion does not in itself imply an opinion! https://t.co/UGvWlMURxy

  • Luciana is on the advisory board of @mmhpi (we have MPs from most parties) https://t.co/n99NAxGAAQ

  • Follow Martin