Deputy-ship and Conflict of interest

Discussion in 'Legal and financial issues' started by rache123, Feb 3, 2017.

  1. rache123

    rache123 Registered User

    Feb 3, 2017
    7
    Hello
    I'm new here
    My husband and I have just been appointed joint and several deputies on behalf of his mum who has dementia.
    I have asked the Office of the Public Guardian this but was told to put my query in writing to them so I thought I would see if anyone here had any experience
    Could we pay ourselves a wage for looking after Mum in our own home? It would save her money by being cheaper than a care home, which she doesn't need yet and she could be with people who cared. I could take a career break for a while but we cant afford to do it for free.
    She has savings and a house but she would need to move in with us as she cant live on her own. Until my father in law moved into nursing care (he is 95!) he looked after her. She isn't at the residential care home stage yet.
    the Public Guardian said it would be a conflict of interest on the phone but to put more info in writing.
    My husband is an only child so there is no-one else involved. Her social worker was happy for her to come with us. We are 200 miles from her so this would make sense.
    Anyone have any thoughts?
    Many thanks
     
  2. Shedrech

    Shedrech Volunteer Moderator

    Dec 15, 2012
    8,311
    Yorkshire
    hello rache123
    welcome to TP
    I really think you must refer this officially to the OPG; I know that the oversight of Deputies is much more stringent than were you and your husband your MIL's Attorneys.
    Maybe have a word with the folk on the AS helpline as they have a lot of info
    best wishes
     
  3. rache123

    rache123 Registered User

    Feb 3, 2017
    7
    Hello

    Thank you. I had already emailed Office of the Public Guardian my query.

    I just wanted to see if anyone had any experience in dealing with them.

    I would have assumed that would not be especially unusual for people to be paid to look after relatives.
    It seemed like an easy choice. Pay us less and be better looked after.

    We haven't touched a penny of her money yet which is why we wanted to check with the Guardian first.
     
  4. nitram

    nitram Registered User

    Apr 6, 2011
    19,546
    Male
    North Manchester
    It's most likely possible but :-
    A third party would have to be appointed to protect MIL's interests.
    Both DWP and HMRC would have to be involved.

    I think you need competent, professional, legal advice.
     
  5. Beate

    Beate Registered User

    May 21, 2014
    11,790
    Female
    London
    Looking at the miserable rate of Carers Allowance (£62.10 a week), I think we would all like to pay ourselves a salary from the cared for's money. Unfortunately, I don't think it's quite that simple. If she moves in with you, I think it's perfectly acceptable to charge some rent and a portion of the household bills, but I think for anything further you ought to get professional advice. I know that if Social services give you direct payments to buy in care, you can decide who you are going to employ. You might be able to employ certain family members but I wouldn't have thought you can simply pay yourself.
     
  6. rache123

    rache123 Registered User

    Feb 3, 2017
    7
    I wouldn't qualify for carers allowance as I earn too much. As my husband is an only child and his mum also an only child there is just us to look after her

    The solicitor who helped us apply for Guardianship through the court of protection is away until next week. I will probably wait to see what the official reply is and then ask her advice

    My motherinlaw has some savings, a good work pension, a state pension and we have just applied for Attendance Allowance so she has money to pay us or to pay a care home. It would be a shame to see her go to care when she isnt at that stage yet just because I cant afford to give up work
     
  7. nitram

    nitram Registered User

    Apr 6, 2011
    19,546
    Male
    North Manchester
    As the OP and OH are COP deputies the 'rent and portion of household bills' would have to be formalised, maybe involving HMRC as you might have to declare the income.

    There would have to be a third party to oversee the arrangement.

    As has been said you need to seek professional advise.
     
  8. Kevinl

    Kevinl Registered User

    Aug 24, 2013
    4,774
    Salford
    I've never heard of an issue with someone paying a reasonable share of the household expenses; food, utilities and the like, however, a wage is a different matter.
    If you take a wage then you are an employee and your MiL your employer, income tax, holiday pay, maternity leave, your national insurance her employers national insurance contributions and all the rest would have to be sorted out.
    I'd stay away from the word "wage" and call it a contribution to the household (or something) otherwise the tax man many get interested. Remember too if you do have an "informal" arrangement then the break in your NI contributions may impact on your state pension later in your life.
    K
     
  9. ElizabethAnn

    ElizabethAnn Registered User

    Jan 4, 2014
    189
    North Hampshire
    Hello rache123,
    Welcome to TP...

    I think you're right, to see your solicitor... whilst you're waiting for him to return, it may be worth having a read of the link below - from another legal practice...

    https://www.wrighthassall.co.uk/kno...n-deputy-or-attorney-get-paid-providing-care/

    If you do decide to do this, (and I think it's very admirable of you) I hope you're going into it with your eyes open... it's certainly not for the faint hearted.

    If this is your first brush with Dementia, I'd have a good read of the many posts on this forum to get an idea of some of the issues you may well have to cope with...

    Good luck.

    rgds, Elizabeth
     
  10. Kevinl

    Kevinl Registered User

    Aug 24, 2013
    4,774
    Salford
    I just wonder why anyone would hire a firm of anything called "wrighthassell" sounds like a right hassle to me:D
    K
     
  11. rache123

    rache123 Registered User

    Feb 3, 2017
    7
    Elizabeth! Thank you! The link was just what I was looking for.
    I have read this and as I understand it, (it's was hoping for)
    I.E. if we 'undercut' commercial services then we can do it!

    I am going into it with eyes open. I know that theory and practice are different but if i can give my mother in law a few weeks or months/ years of a more normal life I would like to try.
    If we can't do it then it will have to be residential care.

    I am already self employed so it wouldn't be much of a leap.

    I have been lurking on various dementia pages for a while now so I have some understanding of what is happening.
    The main point I gained was that dementia in infinitely variable and no-one can predict anything!
     
  12. Shedrech

    Shedrech Volunteer Moderator

    Dec 15, 2012
    8,311
    Yorkshire
    hi all

    has anyone else read the document Elizabeth Ann gives a link to???

    part is (my bolding):-
    I do not have a legal type brain - but this seems to be saying that a family member can be given a voluntary payment to be a carer in( this case the family member (CC) was the Deputy)

    am I misunderstanding??
     
  13. rache123

    rache123 Registered User

    Feb 3, 2017
    7
    That is how I understood it
     
  14. ElizabethAnn

    ElizabethAnn Registered User

    Jan 4, 2014
    189
    North Hampshire
    Yep :) a bit like an estate agent called "Doolittle & Dalley" - I kid you not !
     
  15. ElizabethAnn

    ElizabethAnn Registered User

    Jan 4, 2014
    189
    North Hampshire
    Shedrech,
    else where on the web site (under the "gratuitous care allowance" link) it says:

    Conclusion

    Deputies should be aware that providing care or case management services does not form part of their duty as a deputy. The case of Re. HML could not make the position any clearer. Deputies (including professional and lay deputies) require the Court’s permission before paying themselves a gratuitous care allowance. Lay deputies also require the Court’s permission before paying other family members a care allowance.

    There appears to be some uncertainty as to whether a professional deputy would require the Court’s permission before paying a gratuitous care allowance to family members. If you are a deputy, it is advisable to seek legal advice before paying out a gratuitous care allowance. The same approach is likely to apply to attorneys and it is therefore advisable for attorneys to seek legal advice too.


    I think before any such payments were made, it would be safest (both for the pwd and the carer) to obtain legal approval first...

    rgds, Elizabeth.
     
  16. ElizabethAnn

    ElizabethAnn Registered User

    Jan 4, 2014
    189
    North Hampshire
  17. rache123

    rache123 Registered User

    Feb 3, 2017
    7
    #17 rache123, Feb 3, 2017
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2017
    Thanks again


    Yes, I had read that too. (I printed both out!) But the result of that case was successful.

    Maybe its a case of ask first (which we are doing) and if they say no then I will cite these cases.

    I hadn't seen the OPG's Guidance booklet. Despite 2 days searching via Google for something like this! Why I joined the forum

    So your input has be invaluable Elizabeth.
     
  18. ElizabethAnn

    ElizabethAnn Registered User

    Jan 4, 2014
    189
    North Hampshire
    Sounds like a plan to me :)

    Good luck.

    rgds, Elizabeth.
     
  19. Pickles53

    Pickles53 Registered User

    Feb 25, 2014
    2,474
    Radcliffe on Trent
    Or another law firm in USA....Dewy, Cheetham and Howe. :)
     

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