COP adivce please

Discussion in 'Legal and financial issues' started by ricksmith, Apr 7, 2015.

  1. ricksmith

    ricksmith Registered User

    Apr 7, 2015
    1
    Hi,

    I moved in with my nan since last june as she has dementia, otherwise social services would have put her in a home.

    I applied for COP deputyship, which i recently obtained. Until i obtained it i had a joint account with my nan to deal with her bills etc. Now that has become a deputy account. What i'm worried about is the fact that the OPG sometimes reacquire a report and lists of receipts etc.

    Since i have moved in with my nan and i only get £60 a week in carers allowance, she helps me with some of my finances every now and then. for example on a weeky basis i may use some of my nans pension to help me survive. my nan has always said she would help me. But i'm worried if they want recipts, i dont keep receipts and most of the small things i spend money on i dont have recipts for.

    I also pay her bills through my account, which i taje money from her pension to pay. Would they expect to see my personal accounts?

    I suppose my question is this: What will happen to me if i cant show them receipts for these small things i spend her money on? nothing else will be taken from her accounts, in fact money should build up in them.

    Also i have always taken her pension out for my nan with her card. if deputyship is taken off me for not providing enough info for example, can they stop me withdrawing her pension from her post office account?

    Thanks
     
  2. nitram

    nitram Registered User

    Apr 6, 2011
    19,024
    Male
    North Manchester
    I have no experience of COP deputy requirements, others with personal experience may be along soon.

    Given the above caveat I would have thought that you should separate your finances from your Nan's.

    I would get her pension and any benefits (excluding the carer's allowance which is yours) paid into her account and try to pay all her bills by direct debit from her account.

    This would leave the problem of your Nan 'helping you out', I would ask for advive on this from the OPG/COP remembering that their view may differ from that of the LA if a financial assessment has to be made in the future.

    As for keeping receipts I would expect the COP to accept some amount as 'incidental expenses', again members acting as deputy may be able to clarify.
     
  3. Delphie

    Delphie Registered User

    Dec 14, 2011
    1,252
    Hi ricksmith :)

    You say "What i'm worried about is the fact that the OPG sometimes reacquire a report and lists of receipts etc." Unless you've been specifically told that you won't have to do an annual report, assume that you will. This normally happens at the anniversary of the Deputyship order, although you will have a few weeks after that to complete the forms and send them off. At that point you don't have to send off receipts, but you can be asked to produce them at any time. Depending on the size of the assets you're looking after, you will also be under a certain level of 'supervision'. This can be minimal for assets of under around £20,000 (from memory) and more involved for larger amounts, or if someone is thought to be struggling. Supervision can be anything from phone calls to visits from a court visitor, and they could also ask you to produce receipts.

    On the one hand I want to say don't worry too much. I've been a Deputy for two people for a while now, looking after significant assets, and no one has asked to see any receipts, ever. But I keep them, filed month by month and supported by a spreadsheet. I'm not saying this is the best way but I have to be organized because I'm looking after so much.

    On the other hand, the financial help you're getting is potentially more worrying. You cannot benefit from being a Deputy. A financial gift for Christmas or birthday (proportional to her assets) is fine but what you're saying sounds more like a regular day to day living thing. I can see that this could be a problem. Strictly speaking you ought to be paying your own way, your own fair share of bills etc. On the other hand, as you're living together, maybe you could pull your weight in different ways, by doing odd jobs in the house and garden, if that's appropriate. So it's not completely black and white but I would say that it's something you need to get some official clarification for.

    My advice would be don't panic. Start keeping receipts and talk to the OPG/CoP about your living arrangements. On the whole, they're very keen to help and they're unlikely to throw the book at you if you've made mistakes.
     
  4. Saffie

    Saffie Registered User

    Mar 26, 2011
    22,497
    Female
    Near Southampton
    #4 Saffie, Apr 7, 2015
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2015
    In the annual report the income and expendure should result in the correct balance in the bank.
    As Deputy for my husband, I did keep a receipt of everything I spent but there is an allowance for monetary gifts for birthdays, Christmas etc. which obviously don't have receipts though these will have to be listed and detailed in the the annual report. I used to always give cheques so that I had the proof if I was asked for it.

    I would have a look at the annual report as it will give you some idea of what the OPG expect.

    I hope the link works!
    https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/deputy-annual-report-accounting-for-your-actions
     
  5. Beate

    Beate Registered User

    May 21, 2014
    11,713
    Female
    London
    I wasn't able to reply earlier and it's been said already but you have to be really careful with taking your nan's money for your own expenses. Even if she agreed to that in the past, she has no capacity now and will not understand that you doing this will deplete money that might be needed for her future care. Social services could see this as deprivation of assets so you really need to take advice on this and also find out if you are on all the benefits you might be entitled to. Is your nan on Attendance Allowance and council tax exemption?
     
  6. Jessbow

    Jessbow Registered User

    Try and keep records accurately and keep everything!

    There will be very few things for which a receipt cannot be obtained- if one is not offered, ask for one.

    Be very careful about taking any of nans money to support yourself. You really shouldn't ,you really should pay your own way.
     

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