Can parent give a birthday gift when in care home?

Michele

Registered User
Oct 6, 2007
1,224
Hi,

Mum is in care home and is self funding at the moment, but this won't last for many months. Is mum able to give me and my sister and husbands, birthday gifts - i.e. cash or cheque?

Any advice would be much appreciated.

Many thanks
Michele
 

Onlyme

Registered User
Apr 5, 2010
4,995
UK
Unfortunately I think the answer may be no, they can't. If she is in care and has a LPA registered then the person has a duty to make sure that the money is used for her care and not for gifts. If her money is about to run out there is an even greater case for no presents or the authorities might take a dim view of this type of deprivation of funds.

Its very sad but unfortunately it seems to be the norm.
 

nitram

Registered User
Apr 6, 2011
19,670
North Manchester
"... Is mum able to give me and my sister and husbands, birthday gifts - i.e. cash or cheque?..."

Yes

"Can my attorney give gifts on my behalf?
Unless you make a restriction stating otherwise, your
attorney(s) will be able to give (limited) gifts on your
behalf:
• to charitable organisations
• to relatives, very close friends and any attorney name
in your LPA who is a relative or very close friend
• on birthdays, weddings, anniversaries, etc. when you
would usually give gifts
• of a value that is appropriate to your assets.
You cannot authorise any gifts which would exceed the
attorney’s statutory power."


Page 40
http://www.justice.gov.uk/downloads/forms/opg/lpa-guidance-property-affairs.pdf
 

Michele

Registered User
Oct 6, 2007
1,224
Hi,

I am still very confused. I am not sure mum has a LPA. We have one where me and mum sister take over, but not really sure.

This whole thing is confusing me so much. Surely mum is able to give her own daughters and son-in-laws gifts. Is there a limit on how much she can give.

Sorry to be so confused :eek:

Michele
 

nitram

Registered User
Apr 6, 2011
19,670
North Manchester
If she disposes of large sums of money it could be considered as deliberate deprivation of assets, if she only gives presents of the size she normally does and for birthdays, Christmas, etc then that is OK.
As far as the LA is concerned her assets are already diminishing at the self funding rate which will far outweigh the impact of a few presents.
 

turbo

Registered User
Aug 1, 2007
3,851
Hello Michele, since my mum went into her care home 2 years ago we have had birthday and Christmas money for myself, sister and BILs as well as all mum's grandchildren. We have the same amount that we had before mum lost capacity. We have an Enduring Power of Attorney and I keep a spreadsheet of all payments made.

turbo
 

nitram

Registered User
Apr 6, 2011
19,670
North Manchester
"...I am not sure mum has a LPA. We have one where me and mum sister take over, but not really sure...."

If your mum as donor has made an LPA appointing your and your mum's sister as attorneys you should register it now if you have not already done so, you can register it while your mum is capable but you need not use it.
The important thing to remember is that it takes around 3 months for registration.
 

ggma

Registered User
Feb 18, 2012
1,130
North Staffordshire
Thank you for the link Nitram, it is very helpful and clarifies something I had not thought about.

We have continued as joint attorneys to give gifts for birthdays, christmas and special occassions on behalf of Mum, and we have agreed an amount of money to be allocated for each occassion. We have done this since registgering the EPA which was prior to Mum going to live in a Care Home, so we continued with the same practice as we did when she was in her own home now she is in the care home.

I think it would be very hard to tell someone whilst they have the awareness that they can not give a gift to a member of their family to whom they have always given a gift. We do use the pension element of Mum's money for gifts rather than the capital from selling her home.

I do try and continue to do as many things as possible with Mum that we did with her in her own home, just because we need the extra 24hr support provided by a care home should not mean that everything changes or stops.
 

Michele

Registered User
Oct 6, 2007
1,224
"...I am not sure mum has a LPA. We have one where me and mum sister take over, but not really sure...."

If your mum as donor has made an LPA appointing your and your mum's sister as attorneys you should register it now if you have not already done so, you can register it while your mum is capable but you need not use it.
The important thing to remember is that it takes around 3 months for registration.
Hi Nitram,

Thank you for your advice. Unfortunately mum is not in a situation where she is capable anymore.

I will chat to my sister to see what we have in place

Many thanks
 

Nebiroth

Registered User
Aug 20, 2006
3,511
Yes - your mum can still give gifts, even if she is self-funding. However, it is important in that case that the gifts be "reasonable" in value - a guide that is often used is to look at the type of gift that your mum had regularly given in the past. Otherwise, suddenly giving a lot more might be construed as a deprivations of asset - ie, giving away money or items so as to exclude their being used to pay for care.

Attorneys can also give gifts on the donor's behalf - even to themselves - again, the guide is that they must be "reasonable" and are what the donor themselves would have given, were they able to do so. As before, the sort of gifts given in previous years would be a good guide to this.

Of course, attorneys need to be particularly careful when giving to themselves, for they have a duty not to use their authority for their own benefit.

For example: if your mum had been in the custom of giving someone £25 for birthday and Christmas, there is no reason as to why this shold not continue. But it would be most unwise to start giving substantially more, or outside of special occasions. That would be suspiscious.

Also, if someone is in care and self-funding, they do retain some of their income (about £20 a week as I recall). This may be used for any purpose they wish - the giving of gifts is an obvious one.


A "reasonable" gift would, therefore, usually be a continuance of one customarily given, it wuld normally be on a special occasion and as the guidance states, of a value appropriate to the person's resources.
 

Michele

Registered User
Oct 6, 2007
1,224
Thank you to everyone who has replied. Much appreciated.

I am still confused slightly, but has helped a lot.

I know mum would be devistated if she couldn't give her daughters and family birthday presents etc.

So thank you

Michele
 

Grannie G

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 3, 2006
70,343
Kent
When my mother was in residential care and self funding I asked SS what I could do on her behalf. At the time I had POA and managed her accounts.
I was told anything within reason would not arouse suspicion and SS can recognise in an instant when there are grounds to suspect deprivation of assets.

So usual birthday and Christmas presents are OK as are wedding and new baby congrats. Just make sure when accounts are examined there has been a wedding or a new baby.
 

milly123

Registered User
Mar 15, 2009
896
England
hi i was wondering if i could use some of my husbands money as well as my own for repairs on the house such as new radiators etc. afterall he still owns half milly
 

scatterbrain

Registered User
Jan 10, 2008
25
Berkshire
Use of income

Also, if someone is in care and self-funding, they do retain some of their income (about £20 a week as I recall). This may be used for any purpose they wish - the giving of gifts is an obvious one.

.
My Mum was first in residential care and then in nursing care and was self-funding throughout. I had PoA for her (the Enduring kind, not the current LPA) and dealt with all the finances.

I am not aware of any restriction on how someone in care is allowed to use their money. Obviously they have to pay for the care home, but beyond that it is theirs and can be used in any way they wish. Any home which restricts a resident to £20 a week of their own money needs to be looked at very hard indeed! Usually residents are advised not to have significant amounts of cash with them - it is too easy for things, including money, to go missing. That does not mean that they cannot spend it - just that it is not lying around at the care home.

I agree with the advice about continuing the same pattern of giving as before they went into care. That would be accepted as normal for that person. It is also important to keep accurate records of what has been spent/given on their behalf in case questions are asked at any stage.
 

nimms

Registered User
Sep 17, 2010
5
London
Gift Aid - From a Care Home

Hi,
My father went into a care home in May 2011 on 'rolling rest-bite' i.e. as a self funding resident. I was informed by the home manager that once in a home a resident is only allowed a weekly expenditure allowance of £22.20 by the government. Assuming the monthly cost of the home exceeds your loved ones monthly private income and their private wealth is therefore in constant decline then issuing any form of gift aid would been seen as 'disposal of income' and hence against both EPA & LPA guidance rulings.
Long before my father went into a home I phoned the EPA registers office as active EPA holder for guidance on issuing 'gift aid' to relatives, I was told there were no 'hard and fast' rules however the amount gifted should be relative to the individuals private wealth i.e. if your EPA holder for someone with £200,000 in savings then £200 in gift aid to a relative would not be considered unreasonable howwever if they only had £20,000 in savings then £20 would be a more appropriate amount.
Not to say I'm correct on this but it is the advice I was given and have duly followed.
 

SWMBO1950

Registered User
Nov 17, 2011
2,077
Essex
Do I take it that this also applies to EPA (I am just registering my mothers)?



"... Is mum able to give me and my sister and husbands, birthday gifts - i.e. cash or cheque?..."

Yes

"Can my attorney give gifts on my behalf?
Unless you make a restriction stating otherwise, your
attorney(s) will be able to give (limited) gifts on your
behalf:
• to charitable organisations
• to relatives, very close friends and any attorney name
in your LPA who is a relative or very close friend
• on birthdays, weddings, anniversaries, etc. when you
would usually give gifts
• of a value that is appropriate to your assets.
You cannot authorise any gifts which would exceed the
attorney’s statutory power."


Page 40
http://www.justice.gov.uk/downloads/forms/opg/lpa-guidance-property-affairs.pdf
 

Saffie

Registered User
Mar 26, 2011
22,505
Near Southampton
hi i was wondering if i could use some of my husbands money as well as my own for repairs on the house such as new radiators etc. afterall he still owns half milly
Who are you concerned about the OPG or LA?
I have replaced a few double-glazed windows which had become full of condensation and both the OPG and LA are fine with my using my husband's money to pay half. He is coming to the end of his self-funding. The OPG said that he should be paying what he would normally pay if he were living at home - the LA don't go that far! However, the maintainance of a property jointly owned has to be an acceptable expense.
 

Saffie

Registered User
Mar 26, 2011
22,505
Near Southampton
Any home which restricts a resident to £20 a week of their own money needs to be looked at very hard indeed! Usually residents are advised not to have significant amounts of cash with them -
I
was informed by the home manager that once in a home a resident is only allowed a weekly expenditure allowance of £22.20 by the government
There seems to be some confusion in the above posts. The £22.60 is an amount allowed by the Local Authority - not the government - when the resident is in receipt of contributions by the LA. It is intended for necessary requirements e.g. toiletries etc. It has no bearing on the amount used by a self-funder for relatives' birthday presents etc. I can't see that it has any relevance for a self-funded resident either.
 

peggy39

Registered User
Mar 19, 2011
14
London
can a relative give a gift when in a care home.

I was in this position this week as I am LPA for my Uncle. He never married. My Birthday was mentioned and usually he would take me and the Family out for a meal and celebrate my Birthday.
As he can no longer go out he said for me to get myself a Birthday present. I was unsure of this as I did not want to be seen spending his money. There is no lack of. I asked one of the staff what to do. She said he could offer me a present an she was witness to it that the offer came from him. I am hoping this will be alright. I never give his great nephews and nieces presents anymore and it is a shame because most of the money will go to the taxman.