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Allegations of financial abuse

Discussion in 'I care for a person with dementia' started by Savannah, Mar 2, 2019.

  1. Savannah

    Savannah Registered User

    Nov 25, 2018
    32
    About a month ago I was invited to a meeting by Safeguarding. I understood this was a MARM although I don't think it was because it involved a Senior Safeguarding Social Worker, his Regional Boss and a Financial Safeguarding Officer - no other professionals / agencies were involved. Equally I thought the meeting was about the person I have been offering increasing support to over the last couple of years, who although deemed to still have capacity (confirmed verbally during independent Mental Capacity test 2 days previous, although written report not received at that time). The concerns I had were various but mainly centred on a sudden increased level of confusion which I felt was due to issues with blood sugar levels and support to get back on track. There was absolutely no interest over any of my concerns, but that allegations had been made against me over financial abuse. Yes, there was money that had been transferred to my bank account but shortly after the meeting I supplied full copies of shopping receipts that fully accounted for the monies - had I been made aware, I could have taken everything with me. I had used my money to do the shopping and then it was transferred directly between bank accounts with note stating shopping. Not having any public transport and not being in walking distance of any shops (or cashpoints), means that I have had to pick up on shopping duties following revocation of driving licence. I preferred the transparency of bank transactions rather than cash which would have involved regular trips to cashpoints or too much cash in the home. I was initially told the investigation would likely take a couple of weeks, but yesterday was verbally invited to a meeting next week to discuss the findings . I advised that I had no holiday entitlement with work and hence would have to suffer a financial loss to attend such a meeting as I would be forced to take unpaid leave, plus my employers policy is for longer notice than Safeguarding expect, unless in an emergency situation which this isn't, not to mention, if I was to be honest and tell my employers what this was about, my employer who operate a very strict Ethics and Code of Conduct Policy (and we regularly have to do online compliance) that I have been accused of such allegations (albeit that they are false) would place me in a compromised employment situation and I certainly don't wish to be pressured into lying to my employer. I initially just asked them to confirm on the phone that I had been cleared of all the allegations against me and was advised that their procedures were that a meeting take place. I asked then if they could just detail all of this in writing and I was advised that advice would need to be gained from a more senior person who was on holiday as this was against procedure. It seems absolutely crazy that Safeguarding can demand I lose money to attend a meeting to be told that they haven't found any of the allegations raised against me to be true - even if I had paid leave available, I would prefer to use that either for myself or direct support. Does anyone have any thoughts on this? Something else that was also weird was that upon receipt of copies of bank statements by Safeguarding, I was emailed and asked to explain why there was no longer a large amount of cash in a current account which was there in 2014 but now had just what I would call a max 'living' amount of money sitting in the account. I had no knowledge of anything financial that was going on with the bank accounts at this time, but instead of asking me, Safeguarding Financial Officers should have been able to look through the account themselves and seen transfers to savings plans and some large payments for works. Why on earth would they go back to 2014 when I myself had raised concerns with Trading Standards who had contacted the Police and Social Services were subsequently informed in late 2016 that this person was likely on a target list by scammers / rogue traders, but at the time concluded that even if financial decisions were detrimental that given the person had mental capacity, no action could be taken. Although there ultimately are LPA's registered with the Office of the Public Guardian, these will not come into full force until such time as mental capacity is deemed lost. A comment made to me during the meeting was that whilst I was actively supporting, even if I was no where near and unaware of anything going on that a cheque could be written to Joe Bloggs down the road for say £10,000 and I could be held accountable. I really do not understand this at all.. I certainly do not understand why I should be directly asked to account for a situation regarding a bank account, long before I ever had concerns myself, but at the point at which I did at the time there was no interest and yet now they are interested in two years previous. How can people who are appointed to positions of Financial Safeguarding not be able to see for themselves from banking information supplied where money has gone? Thanks for any comments you may have and do any of you think that Safeguarding have to insist I only receive feedback on the allegations by personally attending such a meeting - and if they do, should they not accommodate myself with an evening or weekend meeting?
     
  2. witts1973

    witts1973 Registered User

    Jun 20, 2018
    542
    Hi do you know why they started to look in to this,was it just after the situation with trading standards etc,I only ask as I used to get a friend that had a car who would travel to Lidl to buy wet wipes to the value of about £10 he did that about 5 times over the year and I paid him back online to prove payment from mums account,it sounds a bit worrying
     
  3. Savannah

    Savannah Registered User

    Nov 25, 2018
    32
    #3 Savannah, Mar 2, 2019
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2019
    No. As soon as this family member was made aware of the Alzheimers diagnosis and on at least two other occasions that I am aware of, this person began making accusations against both myself and relative. The reason appears to be the independent ownership of the property by relative and deceased spouse meaning that this person would like relative put in care home so property can be sold and money is then freely available as inheritance. That is really why I am lucky to have been aware of the need to keep comprehensive records of financial transactions and be able to show absolute transparency PS edit: This is the first time the allegations have been deemed by Safeguarding suitable for investigation and as explained to me, not because they deem mental capacity to have been lost but because if they didn't react this time, they could face allegations of not doing their job
     
  4. witts1973

    witts1973 Registered User

    Jun 20, 2018
    542
    What a nightmare sorry to hear that,best wishes for the future when it's out of the way
     
  5. Savannah

    Savannah Registered User

    Nov 25, 2018
    32
    Thanks. It certainly is unbelievable how people behave when the pound signs appear
     
  6. canary

    canary Registered User

    Feb 25, 2014
    8,653
    Female
    South coast
    Does this person not understand that if the relative is in a care home then the money from the sale of the property, far from being available, will be used for the care home fees?
    An inheritance is not an inheritance until after death :mad:
     
  7. Savannah

    Savannah Registered User

    Nov 25, 2018
    32
    Sadly your assumption regarding the sale of the property and monies available is not legally correct in this situation. Given that the property was owned not under joint ownership but as tenants in common on a 50/50 basis, and therefore despite the personal wishes contained in the Will that the spouse be considered the primary beneficiary of both the income and capital of the deceased Estate, legally there is no right for the remaining spouse or the local authority to take this into consideration and therefore as soon as the property is sold, the people who care only for money can grab the money albeit going directly against the non-legally binding wishes of the deceased's Will
     
  8. canary

    canary Registered User

    Feb 25, 2014
    8,653
    Female
    South coast
    Ah, I see.......
    He only owns 50% of the property, the deceased spouse having left their half (or part of their half) to that person who now wants their share
    :(

    Yes, I too find it despicable when money becomes the over-riding factor.
     
  9. Savannah

    Savannah Registered User

    Nov 25, 2018
    32
    Although I do believe that there are less instances nowadays of people being targeted to take out wills and put into place Trusts for their Estates, I do believe it is still a real threat. The Will was written in 2004, prior to the 2007 change in Inland Revenue rules regarding the allowable IHT allowances. The death occurred in 2009 and the estate did not comprise enough to make the Will / Trust have any financial advantage given the change in the law to allow the at the time (and currently I believe still in existence) that the inheritance tax allowance of £325k could now pass directly onto remaining spouse. Therefore the Trust created purely as a potential to legally mitigate inheritance tax on what is a relatively small estate given high property values, has resulted in the legal position that the remaining sole Trustee out of the three nominated can chose to disregard any personal wishes and use the proceeds of the Estate at their sole discretion with no thought or legal obligation to the wishes of the deceased or the health & welfare of the spouse
     
  10. Savannah

    Savannah Registered User

    Nov 25, 2018
    32
    Yes I think it is really important that this is made really clear to people. Despite a trust given to people to fulfil wishes that a loved one is looked after entirely, giving away legal rights just to save (albeit in this case given change in law from 2007 and 2009 gave no inheritance tax benefit and given proper legal advice could have been revoked), is really dangerous. Let the taxman have it over and above giving any trust that any individual will not allow the pound signs and legally allow greed to overtake the promises made and for wishes clearly made in a Will to be ignored
     
  11. EvieMay

    EvieMay New member

    Nov 4, 2017
    3
    Hearing about how much power the trustee has is scary! Is there nothing you can do about it legally? Have you spoken to the social services? (Although I'm guessing that this is more of a legal thing so they might not get involved)

    I have a horrible feeling that I'm going to have some problems with one of the trustees of a relative's will. I think I need to start educating myself
     
  12. Savannah

    Savannah Registered User

    Nov 25, 2018
    32
    Yes, I suggest you do. You are right, Social Services say private legal matters are nothing to do with them yet fail to recognise the equal implication that by accepting and inviting these people to be privy to investigations and their findings they are failing to take into consideration previous permissions or legal LPA's which exclude such people they are in fact playing to the 'enemy' and not safeguarding the individual at all. When all of this is over, as well as in the interim, I will be doing my best to keep the decent people advised yet recognise that in doing so may give those who are just out for money to take advantage but we must pull together and stop the law from enabling these people to take financial advantage
     
  13. EvieMay

    EvieMay New member

    Nov 4, 2017
    3
    Please do keep us updated if possible. I have a feeling that it could be helpful for many people unfortunately! Do you have a good support network around you? I've found it has been essential to get me through the hard times. And yes, we will just have to hope that there are more good people than bad out there!
     
  14. Savannah

    Savannah Registered User

    Nov 25, 2018
    32
    They've agreed to putting into writing rather than meeting 'to conclude the matter'
     
  15. Savannah

    Savannah Registered User

    Nov 25, 2018
    32
    Update. The findings of Safeguarding have now been put into writing though they did take their time about it. I am happy to report that the claims against me have been found to be untrue. I am disappointed that there has been no recognition regarding the positive financial and other support freely given by myself including getting money back following rogue traders and fraudulent attack on bank account. With regards to other issues raised against the relative, although not successful, many basic factual errors have been made. These have included the wrongful claim of positive things being done for relative by the accuser which in fact were done by myself (some of which are evidenced through receipts I have submitted and hence they should have been able to identify claims are equally untrue) and also that people such as Community Nurses have been responsible for such numerous things, an example being reducing the number of times medication is taken during the day when I was the one who pushed for this over many months before finally being put in place. I conclude that overall I am not impressed. They have only investigated allegations against myself and completely ignored my safeguarding concerns against those who raised allegations against myself that are a direct threat to health, safety, happiness and security and which can be verified. I have asked for clarification why my concerns are being ignored and the case has been closed / concluded.
     

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