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    • Beenie
    • By Beenie 6th Feb 18, 4:39 PM
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    Beenie
    Elderly parent and bank account
    • #1
    • 6th Feb 18, 4:39 PM
    Elderly parent and bank account 6th Feb 18 at 4:39 PM
    The situation in brief: my mother is living alone in another part of the country. She has dementia. Carers have started to come in three times a day to deal with food and medication. There is a safe where I left some cash, and they draw on this for bread, milk etc.

    We thought that mother had a contactless credit card, which would be used when the cash ran out, but when the carers tried to use it, it didn't work. They are asking me to deal with the bank on her behalf. The problem is that banks are quite properly safeguarding their elderly customers, and so I think they won't deal with me, and her dementia means that Power of Attorney is not possible.

    What do I need to do to activate her card or get a replacement? It would also help if her bills could be paid by direct debit, but again, how can I get her bank to do this? Will the bank send documents/forms for signature to my address or must they go to the customer?

    Mother throws things away that she doesn't understand. As an example, I arranged for a replacement bus pass for her but there is no sign of either a bus pass or an application form in her house, and she doesn't remember me even taking her to the council offices where this was discussed. I fear that anything sent to her address by the bank will disappear in the same way.
Page 1
    • Zanderman
    • By Zanderman 6th Feb 18, 4:53 PM
    • 1,378 Posts
    • 3,879 Thanks
    Zanderman
    • #2
    • 6th Feb 18, 4:53 PM
    • #2
    • 6th Feb 18, 4:53 PM
    We thought that mother had a contactless credit card, which would be used when the cash ran out, but when the carers tried to use it, it didn't work. They are asking me to deal with the bank on her behalf. The problem is that banks are quite properly safeguarding their elderly customers, and so I think they won't deal with me, and her dementia means that Power of Attorney is not possible.

    What do I need to do to activate her card or get a replacement? It would also help if her bills could be paid by direct debit, but again, how can I get her bank to do this? Will the bank send documents/forms for signature to my address or must they go to the customer?
    Originally posted by Beenie
    What do you need? Power of Attorney.

    You can't do anything to get a new card, arrange DDs or change address without it.

    Only your mother can.

    If the dementia means PoA is difficult you'll have to get it via whatever the legal process is, I forget the details, but I'd start now!

    Edited to add: Some details about options here: https://www.aprilking.co.uk/2016/08/16/power-of-attorney-dementia/ which suggest, if dementia is advanced, you'll need to go for a Deputyship Order through Court of Protection https://www.aprilking.co.uk/deputyship-orders/
    Last edited by Zanderman; 06-02-2018 at 4:57 PM.
    • Robin9
    • By Robin9 6th Feb 18, 5:03 PM
    • 2,229 Posts
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    Robin9
    • #3
    • 6th Feb 18, 5:03 PM
    • #3
    • 6th Feb 18, 5:03 PM
    Is the contactless card not working just a case of using it with a PIN first?
    Never pay on an estimated bill
    • Beenie
    • By Beenie 6th Feb 18, 5:42 PM
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    Beenie
    • #4
    • 6th Feb 18, 5:42 PM
    • #4
    • 6th Feb 18, 5:42 PM
    Robin, I suspect you are correct. But PINs arrive on a separate post from the card, and mother will have thrown the letter (and PIN) away. When once at the bank together, the clerk asked her for her PIN and she looked blank. She teally isn't with it these days.

    As for PoA, I would risk going to the trouble and expense of a solicitor's appointment, but I know from experience that mother will sit there and ask "where are we" "what are we doing here" and "who's that man" every 20 seconds.

    Will a solicitor overlook this obvious dementia and surge on with the PoA business in hand?
    • EssexExile
    • By EssexExile 6th Feb 18, 5:52 PM
    • 2,603 Posts
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    EssexExile
    • #5
    • 6th Feb 18, 5:52 PM
    • #5
    • 6th Feb 18, 5:52 PM
    Will a solicitor overlook this obvious dementia and surge on with the PoA business in hand?
    Originally posted by Beenie
    No a solicitor will not overlook this obvious dementia but there are routes to a power of attorney in this situation, although it's more complicated. Read up about it or speak to a solicitor.
    Tall, dark & handsome. Well two out of three ain't bad.
    • alanq
    • By alanq 6th Feb 18, 6:06 PM
    • 3,898 Posts
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    alanq
    • #6
    • 6th Feb 18, 6:06 PM
    • #6
    • 6th Feb 18, 6:06 PM
    If mother has insufficient capacity to agree to a Power Of Attorney you will have to apply to the Court Of Protection to become a Deputy.

    https://www.ageuk.org.uk/information-advice/money-legal/legal-issues/power-of-attorney/what-happens-if-you-dont-have-a-power-of-attorney/
    • Zanderman
    • By Zanderman 6th Feb 18, 7:02 PM
    • 1,378 Posts
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    Zanderman
    • #7
    • 6th Feb 18, 7:02 PM
    • #7
    • 6th Feb 18, 7:02 PM
    Will a solicitor overlook this obvious dementia and surge on with the PoA business in hand?
    Originally posted by Beenie
    No, obviously not. The links I gave in post #2 (plus alanq's post above) give information on what you need to do.

    You need to read this up and get the process going. Asap by the sound of it!
    • xylophone
    • By xylophone 6th Feb 18, 7:07 PM
    • 24,441 Posts
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    xylophone
    • #8
    • 6th Feb 18, 7:07 PM
    • #8
    • 6th Feb 18, 7:07 PM
    https://www.gov.uk/become-deputy

    And is it time to consider residential care for your mother?
    • durhamviper
    • By durhamviper 7th Feb 18, 10:12 AM
    • 21 Posts
    • 18 Thanks
    durhamviper
    • #9
    • 7th Feb 18, 10:12 AM
    • #9
    • 7th Feb 18, 10:12 AM
    It would also help if her bills could be paid by direct debit, but again, how can I get her bank to do this? Will the bank send documents/forms for signature to my address or must they go to the customer?
    Originally posted by Beenie
    The bank has nothing to do with paying bills by direct debit. You will have to contact each relevant supplier and arrange to pay via direct debit
    • Robin9
    • By Robin9 7th Feb 18, 11:07 AM
    • 2,229 Posts
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    Robin9
    Beenie - you need to take control of your mothers affairs.

    Presumably her Council Tax is already by DD (and she has the 25% - I assume she is a widow)

    as is water

    What about electrics, gas, telephone . You can do all these online

    Insurance
    Never pay on an estimated bill
    • Beenie
    • By Beenie 7th Feb 18, 8:52 PM
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    Beenie
    My mother is in receipt of pension and housing benefit. She lives in rented accommodation. Her council tax is paid in full by the Benefits Agency hor whatever they are called these days). She can't go into a care home because she says she doesn't want to - and a persons wishes no matter how unhelpful must be taken into account (so I am told by social services).


    What I need is someone who works in a bank, who has observed a similar situation, and can advise how we help a demented widow like this. She has money, paid into her bank account regularly by the state, but she can't access it, neither can her council carers and neither can I as her daughter. That is the problem, and that's where I need advice as a close relative but someone without PoA.
    • Flobberchops
    • By Flobberchops 7th Feb 18, 10:00 PM
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    Flobberchops
    Refer to the helpful replies above! The correct thing to do in this situation is to get a PoA, probably a Lasting PoA. The donor *doesn't* have to have mental capacity for you to do this. It does require you going through a solicitor and wading through some paperwork. Your mother's bank should be able to assist and provide forms, or guidance on what forms they can accept. It's a bit of a process so best to get started ASAP.
    I work for a UK bank, but any comments made on this forum are solely my personal opinion. Caveat Emptor!
    • elsien
    • By elsien 7th Feb 18, 10:08 PM
    • 15,832 Posts
    • 39,948 Thanks
    elsien
    My mother is in receipt of pension and housing benefit. She lives in rented accommodation. Her council tax is paid in full by the Benefits Agency hor whatever they are called these days). She can't go into a care home because she says she doesn't want to - and a persons wishes no matter how unhelpful must be taken into account (so I am told by social services).


    What I need is someone who works in a bank, who has observed a similar situation, and can advise how we help a demented widow like this. She has money, paid into her bank account regularly by the state, but she can't access it, neither can her council carers and neither can I as her daughter. That is the problem, and that's where I need advice as a close relative but someone without PoA.
    Originally posted by Beenie
    As you've already been told, you can't get power of attorney but you can go for a deputyship. This is not a quick process so you need to start straight away.
    In the meantime you can apply to the DWP to be appointee for any benefits/her pension. This will allow you to have these paid into another account which will give you access to some of her money while the deputyship is being set up.

    https://www.gov.uk/become-appointee-for-someone-claiming-benefits

    With regards to the care home scenario, social services are partially correct. Any decision would have to be a best interests decision and made on the balance of benefits and burdens with the least restrictive option being preferable. While your mum is managing at home with support, and is safe to continue living there, then it would be difficult to argue that a care home would be in her best interests as people with dementia manage better in familiar surrounding, as well as needing to take her own wishes and preferences into account. But this doesn't rule out a care home in future as mum's illness gets worse and she becomes more vulnerable/the risks increase.
    Last edited by elsien; 07-02-2018 at 10:12 PM.
    All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of things shall be well.

    Pedant alert - it's could have, not could of.
    • Beenie
    • By Beenie 7th Feb 18, 10:09 PM
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    Beenie
    I am sorry, and don't want to sound ungrateful, but aren't we going round in circles here? Other posters have agreed that a lawyer would not draw up PoA if he witnessed my mother in his office constantly repeating herself and basically talking in a nonsensical way? She maintains that she can make decisions and wants to remain independent, but the reality is that she just stares at bills and can't pay them because she has no cheque book and no access to cash. This means that she can't even take a bus ride into town to talk to the bank (even if she was capable) because she has no money in her purse. When she got to the bank, she wouldn't remember why she was there. Do you see the problem?
    • Beenie
    • By Beenie 7th Feb 18, 10:13 PM
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    Beenie
    Elsien, our posts crossed. I need to know more about this DWP deputyship. Is it something I can do over the phone (the initial advicej and then complete paperwork at my home at a later date?
    • elsien
    • By elsien 7th Feb 18, 10:15 PM
    • 15,832 Posts
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    elsien
    Just added a link in my post about being an appointee.
    This is different to a deputyship because it's just for benefits whereas the deputyship allows you to access all her finances. But it's a starting point.
    All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of things shall be well.

    Pedant alert - it's could have, not could of.
    • noh
    • By noh 7th Feb 18, 10:18 PM
    • 5,154 Posts
    • 3,482 Thanks
    noh
    Elsien, our posts crossed. I need to know more about this DWP deputyship. Is it something I can do over the phone (the initial advicej and then complete paperwork at my home at a later date?
    Originally posted by Beenie
    DWP deputy here:
    https://www.gov.uk/become-appointee-for-someone-claiming-benefits

    Court appointed deputy info here:
    https://www.gov.uk/become-deputy
    Last edited by noh; 07-02-2018 at 10:21 PM.
    • Flobberchops
    • By Flobberchops 7th Feb 18, 10:41 PM
    • 666 Posts
    • 477 Thanks
    Flobberchops
    Apologies, I used the wrong terminology earlier. It's the Court of Protection order which can be gained in the case of mental incapacity.
    I work for a UK bank, but any comments made on this forum are solely my personal opinion. Caveat Emptor!
    • Zanderman
    • By Zanderman 7th Feb 18, 10:52 PM
    • 1,378 Posts
    • 3,879 Thanks
    Zanderman
    Elsien, our posts crossed. I need to know more about this DWP deputyship. Is it something I can do over the phone (the initial advicej and then complete paperwork at my home at a later date?
    Originally posted by Beenie
    Beenie - read the links people have posted! Those set out the procedure you need to follow.
    • Beenie
    • By Beenie 7th Feb 18, 10:55 PM
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    Beenie
    Yes, I have done that now. Many thanks to all for their useful input, especially noh with his/her links to DWP benefits appointee info.
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