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Can anyone give me some advice??


Registered User
Mar 13, 2015
the north west
My uncle recently died and Aunt has undiagnosed dementia, she has now been referred to memory clinic. Not long before he died my uncle sorted POA for both of them for their health, naming me, but POA for finances had not been updated (aunt & uncle were each others) – their solicitors say it has been an oversight that they didn’t update it. My uncle told his palliative nurse before he died that he had handed finances and everything over to me to look after, and he was a very thorough person so I’m sure it has just been an oversight. I am an executor of both their wills.

My aunt initially went into respite care a week after my uncle went into hospital (he died the week after that). She constantly asked to go home so I arranged some private care, social services care and I was going to stay with her too a few times a week, but day took her home she had a fall and I realised it was just not safe enough at home for her, so following discharge from hospital she has gone into another really nice care home.

I did have an appointment at her bank about arranging a third party mandate but had to cancel this after her fall as she’s not walking very well at the moment. They said I could take forms in and they could speak to her on the phone but think she is better seeing them in person, she seems more confused on the phone. Until her fall she was very physically able and was able to wash, dress etc

Aunts social worker and nurse at memory clinic said still ok to go for POA, but, during a very short 5 minute appointment, during which my aunt just cried and talked about my uncle, her gp refused to sign POA, (she had signed poa for health for my aunt two months previously without seeing her). She is in the EMI part of a care home, but they have said they think she would be better in the general side so are looking to move her there. Don’t have money to apply for COP. When I try to talk to her about finances she is not interested and just says she will leave it to me to sort, my uncle looked after everything. If I went through everything with her and tried to explain everything to her – would it be wrong to get her to sign cheques and direct debits to pay her bills? I know she would do this and I am keeping track of all expenses if every questioned. I have paid some bills myself and am out of pocket by a few hundred pounds now so can’t keep doing that. The first payment for her care home will be due in 4 weeks. Don’t want to do anything morally or legally wrong, just want to make sure she is looked after properly.

I know I will eventually have to apply for COP but just don’t have the money for it. I know these rules are to protect people but I am honestly just trying to look after her and do the best I can and seem to be blocked every where I turn.


Registered User
May 21, 2014
If she understands in the moment what the LPA is and does and can sign it then I would try and get it sorted. You don't need a GP to sign. I understand that they are over cautious to protect themselves. Can you find a friend or neighbour who has known her for two years or more to act as certificate provider and witness instead?


Registered User
Apr 6, 2011
North Manchester
Have you tried the soicitor who said that the lack of a P&FA LPA was an oversight?

They may be prepared to act as certificate provider if your Aunt has a suitable period of lucidity.


Registered User
Aug 29, 2007
SW London
I don't see why as an interim measure you should not write necessary cheques and get her to sign them, as long as it's all necessary and on the level. And I would include cheques to yourself, if you have had to pay her bills or expenses. You should not have to be out of pocket because you are managing her affairs. Obviously better to get P of A sorted if you possibly can, though.
My OH used to write cheques for an aunt and get her to sign them - and she didn't even have dementia. Among others there were cheques for large amounts payable to us, which could have looked decidedly dodgy to anyone who didn't know the reason. She would not pay her care home direct - she said that if they knew she had any money they'd find a way to steal it or cheat her.

So we had to pay and she would pay us back. She absolutely hated signing those cheques, though - poor OH would have to brace himself before asking. She had plenty but loathed having to part with any of it. I used to call her Queen Midas on the quiet. (Or maybe not so quiet, looking back...)


Registered User
Jul 30, 2014
Have the doctors actually said she lacks mental capacity, Mark? Surely until such time as they do, you are well within your rights to get her to sign cheques etc. The only thing you need to do is keep a record of everything so if anyone else from the family queries what you've paid to whom and why, you have a full explanation.