Court of protection?

Discussion in 'Legal and financial issues' started by Myquery, May 2, 2015.

  1. Myquery

    Myquery Registered User

    May 2, 2015
    7
    My father passed away last year and my mum is bed bound with end-stage dementia/Alzheimers - she has been like this for some years.

    My sister is her Deputy along with a solicitor - she has done everything she can to keep me out of mum's care despite me wanting to be involved. I have concerns that my sister is spending their/her money inappropriately - I have asked her solicitor for sight of the income and expenditure accounts but they have ignored the request - further adding to my concerns.

    Does anybody know if there is a form or proceedure via the CofP that I could follow and has anybody else been in this very difficult and awkard situation?
     
  2. nitram

    nitram Registered User

    Apr 6, 2011
    18,891
    Male
    North Manchester
    "My sister is her Deputy along with a solicitor"

    If you complain about the handling of your mum's finances you will be complaining about the solicitor as well as your sister.

    "I have asked her solicitor for sight of the income and expenditure accounts but they have ignored the request"

    You have no right to see the details of your mum's finances, just as you would have no right to see them if she had capacity. The court appointed deputies are acting because your mum cannot.

    "Does anybody know if there is a form or proceedure via the CofP that I could follow"

    https://www.gov.uk/report-concern-about-attorney-deputy

    The OPG would want evidence to substantiate your complaint.
     
  3. Myquery

    Myquery Registered User

    May 2, 2015
    7
    #3 Myquery, May 4, 2015
    Last edited: May 16, 2015
    Court of protection - deputy

    My mum has Alzheimers/dementia and is bed bound.

    There is a Deputy Order that makes my sister and a solicitor her Deputy. I was kept out of the arrangements mostly by my father (who had Parkinsons and was often confused) but he has died now and I would like to apply to become a Deputy as well. Is there any reason that people know off why this would be a problem? Do I need the consent of the existing Deputies or can I just apply. I am a beneficiary in mums will and she would not have wanted me kept out of her life and care needs. My sister applied and got the CofP Deputy arrangement in place some years ago behind my back and did not tell me. She also moved my parents around from care home to care home (3 in total) - totally confusing them both.
     
  4. LYN T

    LYN T Registered User

    Aug 30, 2012
    6,968
    Brixham Devon
    Sorry I can't help about Deputy query but I'm sure others will be along soon who do know!

    Are you worried about your Mum's finances? The Deputy has to provide a report on an annual basis to show that they are acting in the correct manner i.e. not using her funds for their own benefit

    Lyn T
     
  5. Myquery

    Myquery Registered User

    May 2, 2015
    7
    Follow up

    Thank you for this, to whom do they have to provide an annual report and is the report available to non-Deputies?


     
  6. LYN T

    LYN T Registered User

    Aug 30, 2012
    6,968
    Brixham Devon
    Sorry, as I say I'm not an expert but I think the Deputy is required by the COP to produce accounts. I shouldn't think that the report would be available to anyone but your Sister and the Solicitor.
     
  7. ASH74

    ASH74 Registered User

    May 18, 2014
    295
    The report is to the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG). It is a confidential record.

    At the time of becoming a Deputy your sister is /was required to notify (give notice) to all those that at have an interest in your Mum (you). I would raise your concerns about this with the OPG.
    i.e. Because you weren't notified, they may be able to advise you of the best way forward.






    Sent from my iPhone using Talking Point
     
  8. Saffie

    Saffie Registered User

    Mar 26, 2011
    22,501
    Female
    Near Southampton
    I agree that this should not have happened and you may have cause for a complaint.
    close relatives have to agree to a person becoming a Deputy.
    I'm surprised a solicitor allowed this to happen.

    The report is actually a form which has to be filled in on the anniversary of the date of appoinment as a Deputy. It has to give details of all expenditure for the past year and all receipts, bank statements etc have to be available should the Office of Public Guardianship - not the Court of Protection - wish to see them.
    The CoP is the actual Attourney and your sister the court's Deputy.
     
  9. ASH74

    ASH74 Registered User

    May 18, 2014
    295
    Obviously the Solicitor can only work on the instructions they receive .....so if they are told there is nobody to notify etc etc but that is something to be found out!

    If the Solicitor is found to be at fault you can complain to the SRA http://www.sra.org.uk/home/home.page



    Sent from my iPhone using Talking Point
     
  10. jenniferpa

    jenniferpa Volunteer Moderator

    Jun 27, 2006
    39,432
    Your problem is that there are already 2 deputies. If both deputies were willing to apply again to the COP for a deputy order for all three of you, you might have a chance, but without agreement from the existing deputies or some circumstance such as death of the deputies, an unwillingness for them to continue or proven malfeasance you don't have a chance.
     
  11. ASH74

    ASH74 Registered User

    May 18, 2014
    295
    I have to disagree.....the whole point is that notice should be given to all interested parties.....if this hasn't happened the Deputyship is vulnerable to objection by those who haven't been given due notice. I say this as a Deputy myself and following discussion with my husband who is a Solicitor. As I have already said an approach to the OPG who will be able to advise is the best way forward.



    Sent from my iPhone using Talking Point
     
  12. jenniferpa

    jenniferpa Volunteer Moderator

    Jun 27, 2006
    39,432
    #13 jenniferpa, May 4, 2015
    Last edited: May 4, 2015
    Did you miss the bit about malfeasance? Failure to notify the necessary parties might well fall into this category although its possible that if this deputyship was set up when the ops father was still alive notification of a daughter might not have been necessary. The timeline isn't entirely clear to me.

    Any way the point I was making to the op is that its not a straightforward case of "apply to the court".
     
  13. jenniferpa

    jenniferpa Volunteer Moderator

    Jun 27, 2006
    39,432
    Incidentally the notes for the COP1 form say

    So while normally family members would be notified, it's not an absolute requirement and it does rather sound as if the OP's father was fairly adamant about keeping the OP shut out.
     
  14. ASH74

    ASH74 Registered User

    May 18, 2014
    295
    No I didn't miss your point .... But I am making the point the first people to speak to is the OPG ....I am not suggesting applying to the Court.

    The OPG are the best people to advise if someone is not happy about a Deputyship and or how it is being operated....they will know the in and outs of the application.


    Sent from my iPhone using Talking Point
     
  15. sue38

    sue38 Registered User

    Mar 6, 2007
    10,856
    Wigan, Lancs
    Myquery, is it your mum's finances or personal welfare you're concerned about? It's likely that your sister and the solicitor only have the Deputyship for your mum's financial affairs. The court is reluctant to appoint a deputy to deal with welfare matters (such as medical treatment and where your mum lives) and it's extremely unlikely they would appoint a legal professional as a personal welfare deputy.

    Unless your sister has a Lasting Power of Attorney for Health and Welfare, or in the unusual circumstance she has been appointed personal welfare deputy, she won't necessarily have any more say than you about your mum's welfare.
     
  16. Myquery

    Myquery Registered User

    May 2, 2015
    7
    #17 Myquery, May 16, 2015
    Last edited: May 16, 2015
    Deputy?? Possible conflict of interest?

    There is a Deputy Order for mum who has Alzheimers and dementia that originally made my sister and a solicitor her Deputy. I was kept out of the arrangements mostly by my father (who had Parkinsons and was often confused) but he is dead now.

    Mum is still in the family home and is given some care from an agency and my sisters family - who live a couple of minutes away (I live 45 - 50 minutes drive away). The CofP have confirmed my sister is no longer a Deputy so mum just has one - a remote solicitor. I do not know when she ceased to be a Deputy - I was not informed.

    I am worried about this - maybe my sister is charging the solicitor to look after mum - I do not know - we do not speak as we fell out over the way my parents were cared for. Does this strike anybody as a conflict of interest and can I apply to become a Deputy? Surely, she needs more than one?

    Most grateful for any help or thoughts
     
  17. Delphie

    Delphie Registered User

    Dec 14, 2011
    1,252
    Hi Myquery :)

    In no particular order...

    You mum doesn't need more than one Deputy. I'm a Deputy for my mum and my husband's aunt, and it's just me in both cases, and I don't think that's particularly unusual.

    I'm not sure what you mean by your sister charging the solicitor to look after your mum, but the solicitor will almost certainly be charging your mum for his/her services. Lay Deputies (like me or your sister when she acted as one) don't get paid but professionals who do the same role do.

    I'm not sure about a conflict of interests... What do you mean by that?

    And yes, you can apply to become a Deputy, but as there seems to be a bit of 'history' there as far as family relationships, the court may well decide that the situation is fine as it is, with the solicitor looking after mum's finances. In fact when there's conflict within a family, this would be the usual decision, to appoint someone impartial.

    As to why your sister is no longer a Deputy, obviously it's impossible to say for sure, but it could be a simple as her having her hands full with caring for your mum and not wanting further responsibilities. Being a Deputy takes a fair bit of effort. There's an annual report to complete and everything needs to be accounted for and to add up. You also need to explain your decision making process and, depending on the level of supervision, there can be face to face contact with court visitors. The only realistic chance you have of finding out what's going on is to mend some bridges with your sister. I'd start with that and maybe offers to help with mum from time to time. If you get closer to the situation you'll be in a better position to decide if your mum's interests are being taken care of properly.

    Good luck. :)
     
  18. tweetypie

    tweetypie Registered User

    Mar 16, 2012
    37

    It's very difficult for you this situation and I'm sorry you find yourself in it.

    I am sure you are genuinely concerned but there is very little you can do about this.

    However I can reassure you that when the Court of Protection is involved in a person's finances they have to be sent the accounts - I believe annually and only certain expenditure and amounts is acceptable.

    So your sister couldn't spend large amounts of money without prior approval from the court.

    I hope this reassures you a bit.
     
  19. canary

    canary Registered User

    Feb 25, 2014
    10,214
    Female
    South coast
    I have recently become the CoP deputy for my mum and tweetypie is right - you have to send in annual accounts and justify every penny and cant spend large amounts without prior approval.

    Im sorry that things are so strained between you and your sister. What makes you think that she is using mums money inappropriately?
     

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