Great 'managing money with dementia' Hunt

124

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  • caitlyn22
    caitlyn22 Posts: 209 Forumite
    cashferret wrote: »
    Every institution in this country needs to revise its procedures in relation to powers of attorney and to sort themselves out. They increase the burden on families already under the enormous strain of supporting someone with dementia. I really wouldn't have believed how much would go wrong and if so much has happened to me, it must be happening to everyone.

    I completely agree! As I said in a previous post, Smile were brilliant for me, but there are still times when I ring up and they ask me to confirm who I am and when I do they hesitate...I then explain for the 100th time that I am not the named account holder but that I have PoA on this account. Cue:

    "Can you hold a minute please?"
    *ten minute wait*
    "OK, thank you. How can we help today?"

    To be honest I think the same can be said for the way companies deal with things when someone has died. I can still remember a conversation with BT where I informed them that my dad was terminally ill and only had a matter of days left - before I had chance to ask if they could forward any bills/correspondence to me, I was told that they had a special team committed to tracking me down as a relative and I would be liable for the rest of his 18 month contract! I still have the letter where the Manager basically says "Erm...we were very wrong - practically, legally and morally."

    And don't get me started on the Halifax who needed an 8th copy of the death certificate as they lost all previous copies and then gave a builder a set of keys to my dad's house which he promptly disappeared with, never to be seen again!

    We should start a name and shame thread for all the companies to avoid if you want loved ones to have quality support and service when you are no longer around to manage your finances!
  • Quote from LorryLee '...he would not even think about a Power of Attorney. In his mind he was not suffering from dementia and did not need to think about someone else needing this in the future... A power of attorney would give me peace of mind but he won't cooperate!'

    I really recognize this as my Mum still doesn't believe she has dementia even though she is now living in EMI nursing care - her dementia's really complex and severe - and she would not consent to POA when she had capacity as she was so independent in spirit. Some years ago we sorted out a joint account, like you have, and put all bills on direct debit so that we could manage them on her behalf. But she was constantly vulnerable to unscrupulous traders, charity collectors, cowboys, etc.

    As she no longer has capacity we have now had to apply via the Office of the Public Guardian to ask the Court of Protection to appoint a family member to be her Deputy for financial and property affairs, as her property needs to be sold to cover care home fees. The Court of Protection forms seem a little overwhelming but you don't need legal advice to fill them in. Your father will need to be informed and he can make objections to the Court if he wishes, which they will weigh up. The application costs around £400, which I believe can be redeemed from your father's estate if it's successful.

    It is a terrible strain and worry, and as Caitlyn22 says, it is likely to get worse before it gets better. Part of the illness can be to become paranoid and aggressive - entirely understandable as your world becomes more and more difficult to make sense of - but a dreadful thing for those trying to care for you.

    If any advice would be useful, mine would be to contact the Alzheimer's Society and we also had excellent support from Social Services and our GP, and the national charity Carers. And however hard it is to face, you may have to consider Court of Protection in order to ensure you have the legal right to make decisions in your father's best interests.

    Good luck!
  • cashferret
    cashferret Posts: 239 Forumite
    First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    edited 10 March 2011 at 3:20PM
    Three letters in relation to my power of attorney this morning, each one a screw-up as usual, as follows:

    1. HMRC attempting to fine me £100 for late 2009/10 tax return for my dad, which I did in fact send in five months before the deadline. I've phoned up and they have no trace of it. I'll have to fill it in again and put in writing all the circumstances. No guarantee of not getting fined.

    2. Letter sent directly to my mum that she has had to forward to me about the pension she inherits from my dad. My dad's pension company refuse to deal with me as her attorney (as my mum would prefer) because she is still capable of understanding financial affairs. They don't seem to understand what a power of attorney is for.

    3. Letter about new charges from my mum's energy provider, saying they've just realised they sent a letter to the supply address rather than the correspondence address (me) so are sending it again. At least they're sorting their own mistake out but my mum has already had the trouble of forwarding their original letter to me.

    And so it goes on... :cool:
  • This is a very good thread. I have recently sent off all the forms for LPAs both the Health and Financial ones having finally had it decreed that mum does have capacity.

    Unfortunately up until now things have become a mess and added to that is the fact she is too ill now to ever go home. Meanwhile, I have simply taken over certain things with no problem - I have cancelled all the utilities at the house and paid them up. I have written letters to various people who need to know she no longer lives there and asking them to direct all mail to my address - she has signed these letters.

    I have yet to do battle with the bank and the Pensions people as I need to wait for the LPAs.

    This thread is very informative and as it is is also about saving money both for the person being looked after AND the person doing all the work perhaps we should have a list of institutions who ARE helpful and competent with dealing with LPAs/EPAs and for whom you only need to do something ONCE.
  • We though we had covered all the options, after my fathers death in 2001 my mother put an EPA in place which was invoked 2008 and used until March 2010 when trying to sell her property to pay for more care the conveyancer spotted a mistake where it had been signed in the wrong place. Once year on we are still struggling with the solicitor who wrote the original document to get it resolved, It has taken a massive toll on my health and family life. We found out at Christmas that a similar situation was rejected by Court of Protection May 2010 ....why didn't our solicitor know this. Please ensure even when using a solitor you check the paperwork carefully.
  • Although if your Mum predeceased your father the estate ie her share of the house would pass in accordance with the will he can relinquish his claim on the estate so that it passes to the next beneficiaries. If the will has been properly drafted this is likely to be her children. My father-in-law is in residential care and we took legal advice on these matters. We were advised that although we could not change his Will if he died before my mother-in-law she could relinquish her claim and avoid this being used if she needed care herself in the future. As the money would not pass to her she would not be classed as giving it away. You could also apply for attendance allowance.
  • I have been quoted £1000 to create and register a Lasting Power of Attourney for myself and my husband. I have checked the Guardian website and they have all the forms that are required. Has anyone done this themselves ?
  • sammyhammy
    sammyhammy Posts: 160 Forumite
    HARDMAN32 wrote: »
    I have been quoted £1000 to create and register a Lasting Power of Attourney for myself and my husband. I have checked the Guardian website and they have all the forms that are required. Has anyone done this themselves ?

    This is almost double the cost I charge for the LPA for a couple (including drafting, certificate of capacity and registration). Might be worth shopping around. I have mentioned Solicitors for the Elderly in an earlier post. Not sure if this is allowed, so apologies in advance.

    My general advice to those considering doing it personally is that if you've tackled an Attendance Allowance form you are off to a good start.

    Carefully follow the instructions about the order in which the LPA needs to be signed (donor Part A, then Certificate Provider Part B and then the Part C(s) for the Attroney(s)), and be careful about who witnesses the signatures and who is able to act as Certificate Provider. It is getting this wrong that leads to many rejected applications.

    The other matters to be careful about are ensuring that the names and dates of birth are copied correctly onto the application to register (LPA002). Discrepancies will lead to queries and delays in the registration process.

    Don't forgot those on low incomes (under £16,500 p.a.) can claim a full (under £12k) or partial fee remission on form OPG506A (back of OPG506) to reduce or avoid the need to pay the £120 registration fee. You will need to provide evidence of receipt of a qualifying benefit or proof of income to claim the exemption/remission.

    Hope this assists.
  • jane45
    jane45 Posts: 76 Forumite
    Direct Debit help



    Hi

    My Mum has Alzheimers and is in a nursing home. We have her bank statements which have 3 direct debits that go out monthly. All 3 are to insurance companies and are all for around £15 pm but we have no idea what they are for. We have contacted all 3 and told them the situation and given them as many details as we can, name, DOB, address, NI number but all 3 have said they cant trace any policies in her name!!! She is no longer at the registered address.

    We have contacted a solicitor but they have said it will cost £600 to investigate. We dont really want to do this as we have no idea what the policies are worth if indeed anything. They could be for absolutely anything!!!

    (I had posted in banking forum but think I hope this is probably the right forum) and look forward to any advice.

    Jane
  • Savvy_Sue
    Savvy_Sue Posts: 46,019 Forumite
    Name Dropper First Post First Anniversary
    Do anyone have Power of Attorney for your mother? If not, you should be contacting the Office of the Public Guardian and getting control of your mother's finances.

    However, the next step IMO would be to write to the companies concerned and say that since they cannot trace policies in your mother's name, you are about to notify the banks that the DDs are being taken in error and request a full refund under the DD guarantee.

    The DD guarantee is a wonderful thing. :wink:
    Signature removed for peace of mind
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