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EPA - Time limits on informing banks etc

Discussion in 'Legal and financial issues' started by CraigC, Nov 1, 2007.

  1. CraigC

    CraigC Registered User

    Mar 21, 2003
    I registed an EPA for my dad about three months back.
    Right now life is a bit hectic and I'm just tying to get on top of paperwork again. Just a few questions if anyone has any specific experience.

    1. Does anyone know if there is a time limit by which the attorny needs to let all the interested parties know the EPA has been registered. I still have quite a few people to contanct like pensions, tax office, benefits etc have just got behind with it all.
    2. Has anyone had difficulties with a bank and joint accounts? Mum and dad have a couple of joint accounts and the EPA has been queried by one bank saying that they also need a registed EPA for my mum. I want to be able to manage the account online as mum is also unwell.

    Kind Regards
  2. Laylabud

    Laylabud Registered User

    Sep 7, 2007
    Hi Craig C

    Sorry i do not know the answers to your questions so i shall watch this thread with interest.
    If you do not mind me asking, how much did it cost to register the EPA as i will be in the process of doing this myself.

    Layla Bud
  3. 1234

    1234 Registered User

    Sep 21, 2005
    glad you asked that question craig, as i also have been too distracted to think logically about doing those things since registering epa, better get my act together. never entered my head ther might be a time limit, just thought cross that bridge when necessary, so if anyone knows legal requirments ,help would be appreciated. always been a stickler for keeping every thing straight but just nowj just surviving each day with Trevs moods is my greatest achievment. Connie saw your photos of your lovely Lionel and made me get a grip, was wallowing in self pity after changing Trev 3 times in 3 hours, but he is so fit and mobile, just made me count my blessings, hope lionel has had a more settled day, so you can relax a little, social worker coming this pm, after last one has left the service leaving no paper work on trev, will just have to smile because to loose it will just work against us sorry to have drifted , find myself doing that alot these days thanks Pam
  4. jenniferpa

    jenniferpa Volunteer Moderator

    Jun 27, 2006
    Craig, not the same thing, but I had third party access to my mother's account but the bank in question refused to allow me online access. I will confess now to setting up online access anyway, but I wasn't supposed to. I did investigate this and discovered that they were, I'm afraid to say, within their rights. However If I had had a registered EPA this is one of the things the DRC has addressed and I don't think they would have got away with it. So while different banks have different procedures (some will allow online access with a third party mandate, some with a power of attorney) I think it's not so much the joint aspect of it, but that the bank in question has archaic procedures. Having said that, I believe that if the account can be operated as a normal joint account (i.e either/or in terms of withdrawals etc) I cannot see why either/or can't have online access, which in your case would be via your father's EPA. Have you looked at the drc website?
  5. Clive

    Clive Registered User

    Nov 7, 2004
    #5 Clive, Nov 1, 2007
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2007
    Hi Craig

    I don’t know what the official answer is to your question about a time limit, but I only told people that the EPA had been registered if I found myself in a situation where I could not proceed otherwise. Life is too short to make work.

    As for your internet account, my bright idea, off the top of my head, is that you need your mum to ask (possible on the telephone) for the joint account to be changed into an online account, with you acting for your dad using his registered Power of Attorney. If your mum cannot go to the bank they should be able to send any necessary papers through the post.

    If you do find it too difficult to get the bank to change your parent’s current joint account then maybe the simplest thing to do is to open one internet joint account with your mum and a second internet joint account with your dad, and move the money between them as necessary.

    I do feel for you. You just don’t need the hassle that all the so called Money Laundering and Data Protection laws cause carers. In general the people working in the banks have little idea about what to do with EPA and you just have to be very tolerant with them.


  6. little bird

    little bird Registered User

    Nov 1, 2007

    I've just joined. I have EPA for my Mum which I haven't registered yet. the bank was quite happy to give me access to her account online.

    I'll have to register the power of attorney soon. Does anyone know if, having registered it, Mum won't be able to sign cheques, use her debit card etc or will it still be possible for her to do that?

    I live a hundred miles away and as yet we haven't managed to persuade her to have carers in.
  7. jenniferpa

    jenniferpa Volunteer Moderator

    Jun 27, 2006
    It's variable - some banks will some banks won't. I think on balance the answer will be no, but you'll have to check with the specific bank.
  8. Lucille

    Lucille Registered User

    Sep 10, 2005
    Hello Craig and Littlebird

    I'm not sure whether there's a time limit, but I wouldn't worry too much about it (you have a lot on!). I'm still chasing people to even respond to a letter (mum's EPA was registered at the beginning of September). The utility companies have been very blase in their approach. The bank also weren't that good, in fact I think the chap knew very little as I asked the same question as you about online banking...

    He prevaricated, whilst large question marks came out of his head, disappeared for TWENTY MINUTES, and left me sat there twiddling my thumbs and when he came back he said that as I had had an unregistered EPA to start off with and mum's accounts were 'attached' to mine then I could go through to her accounts on that basis, but couldn't have access to her account through a separate password etc. (I.e. I used MY pin code and password, but that I couldn't be given one for her account only). All very bizarre. I didn't want to push it because, like Little bird, I don't live anywhere near my mum and still wanted her to have access to cash (albeit very limited). I have achieved this by getting them to agree to put a stop on the account if she tries to withdraw too much (she can only go into the branch). She hasn't got a switch card, so can't pay for things on that. As Jennifer said, I think it depends on the bank. I have a gut feeling that had I seen someone who 'knew' about reg'd EPA, they would have headed mum off at the pass, when it came to withdrawing cash even over the counter. Because, she's either capable or not and surely the registration of the EPA, suggests the latter.

    Just my thoughts. I send a small prayer up to that great banking manager in the sky that I am allowed to run the account the way I do. The consequences of leaving money around the place for mum to manage in between my visits, doesn't bear thinking about. At least - at the moment anyway - she can get to and from the bank.

    Hope you both get something sorted.
  9. sue38

    sue38 Registered User

    Mar 6, 2007
    Wigan, Lancs
    Hi Craig,

    No as far as I have read there is no time limit for producing the registered EPA. I would just notify each one as and when you come to deal with them, e.g. when you send in your Dad's tax return send them a copy of the registered EPA.

    As to your second question, again I think this is a case of the bank not knowing what they are talking about. I presume that either your mum herself operates the account or you operate it under an unregistered EPA? As your Dad's attorney you 'stand in his shoes' and can do whatever he would have done. This should not affect your mum's authority to deal with the account.

    As far as managing the account on line I suspect that this will be down to the individual bank as to whether they allow attorneys to manage accounts on line.
  10. CraigC

    CraigC Registered User

    Mar 21, 2003
    Thanks for all your timely advice!
    I'm looking at the DRC website - now merged with others but not found anything useful.

    It does make sense to me to just do it bit by bit as and when I need to provide information to access accounts etc. But there are issues with changing address and selling the house to fund care etc etc. So I need to get moving on some of these things. I'm also getting two banks bouncing cheques and it is hard to get any information without getting mum or dad to speak to them on the phone. They also charge crazy fees for bounced cheques and it so time consuming to get these unfair fees reimbursed. As soon as I mention that I am their son they freeze up - some get quite flustered. It gets more complicated as only one EPA is registered. It is the shared assets / accounts that cause the most grief.

    Don't get me wrong, they should protect people's money BUT they should also train staff to recognise legitimate circumstances like EPAs, POA etc. It should go both ways.

    I've decided to try to open two brand new bank accounts with the same bank so it is easier to work with mum and dad's finances.

    I have an appointment on Monday with a customer services manager (steered clear from the financial advisor). If there are any issues at all with me running the account as the attorney using web access I'll move along to the next bank. One of the main issues is going to be direct debits and standing orders, these are hard enough to change without and EPA in place.

    When I made the appointment with the bank the clerk said those terrible words again "what is an EPA" - I asked her to make sure that whoever I see next week is familiar with registered EPAs. That reminds me, she asked for a heap of ID from both the attorney and the doner - time to start hunting.

    Will take it from there and let you know if I can pass on anything useful for future reference.

    Kind Regards
  11. alfjess

    alfjess Registered User

    Jul 10, 2006
    south lanarkshire
    Hi Craig

    Most of my parents accounts with H--- were straight forward to administer, with lodged certified copies of POA, but I couldn't be named on their current account, because only 2 names were allowed, ie Mum and Dad.

    I could remove one of their names and subsitute mine, but at that time, they were not to bad and I was reluctant to remove either of their names. I just took them to the bank with me when I had to withdraw.

    However, it has taken 11 months to encash an investment. my parent's had with H---. despite having sent them certified copies of POA's for both Mum and Dad on 3occasions.

    I had encashed other investments, no problem, with a different Dept, but this certain Dept in H--- was insisting on a document that doesn't exist in Scotland.

    Eventually, I had to get my parent's solicitor involved.

    If I receive a bill from the solicitor, it will be going straight to H---

    Nothing is easy where POA is concerned, just very frustrating.

    Good luck
  12. nemesisis

    nemesisis Registered User

    May 25, 2006
    #12 nemesisis, Nov 1, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 2, 2007
    just read post and for a laugh (as is not normal) will post my experiance with alliance and leicester
    dec 16 phone call to make an appointment
    dec 21 visit with Epa, Passport. gas bill (comment no problem)
    feb 16 phone call (A & L have no record) make another appointment
    feb 28 visit with Epa,passport ,gas bill see laura (ok set that up for you)
    may 28th phone call (can take six weeks to go thro but with po strikes give us a bit longer)
    back from hols july 19th ring again
    speak to angela (I dont know whats happend) Laura is on maternity leave, can you come in again - so yes another visit (third copy of EPA, Passport, Driving licences, Gas bill)
    sept 3rd my brother who has co p/a rings and gives them grief
    sept 4th they ring me - can I call
    sept 5th (dont knowwhats happed can you visit again with EPA, passport,driving licences and gas bill_,which they photo copyied again for the third time !
    manager apologises - god dont know whats happened Epa has not gone through but what are you short off ??
    me -well I have Paid £2500.00 up to now on mums care fees dont worry we will transfered £3000.00 to your account and I promise this will be sorted out!
    oct 26 ring again (angela answered)
    hi ange its me julie re mums epa (ange have you not recieved anything yet ? )
    me - no
    oh dont know whats happened will chase it up ring you back
    now nov 1st still not heard
    so as I am in the process of selling mums house to pay for her care fees if your loved one has money in alliance and leicester be aware
    my solicitor is sorting mums out now as I dont trust them

    Moderator note from Brucie: No major problem here but please read my insert that follows.

    This post refers to a specific organisation. I am going to quote from part of the new tutorials that you will see when the new TP is launched in the next two weeks.
    Just to repeat, a list such as has been given is not a problem, but I've used this as an opportunity to quote from the new tutorials that I hope will clarify all sorts of things for members.
  13. Margaret W

    Margaret W Registered User

    Apr 28, 2007
    North Derbyshire
    Oh gosh, I am so sorry for some of you. Well, mum's accounts were all with H---. all in her sole name. We made an appointment with the local branch and took along the then unregistered POA, not even certified, and they added me to her accounts as POA. Took ten minutes.

    Since then I registered to manage accounts on line, with no problem, opened new accounts, transferred money, dead easy. Only thing is you can't CLOSE accounts on line, so I have an account with 32p that I need to go into a branch to close.

    I did have a problem with the new accounts, cos I couldn't find the right method of opening accounts with POA, so they have ended up as joint accounts, which is not right, cos the HMRC will start regarding the income as half mine. Need to get that changed. Not sure how.

    Some things are easy, some aint, AND DOESN'T IT ALL TAKE TIME?

  14. CraigC

    CraigC Registered User

    Mar 21, 2003
    #14 CraigC, Nov 2, 2007
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2007
    Not at all, it cost £120 to register the EPA 3 months ago.
    Please note these prices may have changed. Also not registering a LPA (this has taken over from and EPA) is a bit more expensive.

    You will also need to find a solicitor to provide certified copies - most banks will only accept certified copies (or the original if you are unlucky). These prices vary so please shop around. I was quoted £150 by a local solicitor for 6 certified copies. Found someone out of town who did exactly the same for £25.

    good luck

    p.s. Please can I ask people not to name banks or building societies. I'm resisting this myself - we just try to discourage naming and shaming on this forum for legal reasons. Just don't want talking point to turn into a bank bashing forum, there are enough of those about.

  15. Clive

    Clive Registered User

    Nov 7, 2004
    Hi all

    The problems seem to affect all banks.

    In the twelve months since I registered mum’s EPA and sold her house I have dealt with nine financial institutions on her behalf. Not one has got it right first time.

    Some were relatively simple like the postal account I tried to open. I checked with the bank’s help line about what was required and, as instructed, posted the EPA, cheque, application form and two lots of two pieces of identity proof each for both mum and myself, including my telephone number.

    After several weeks of trying to find out what had happened to my application the whole package arrived back at my home with a word processed letter saying that the bank had tried to do an electronic check with a credit agency and could not find mum at her current address. I was instructed to return ALL the documents to them plus ONE extra piece of identification for mum. The account was then opened by return of post.

    On another occasion I opened an “online” fixed rate account with a major institution. It took 18 days and requiring two visits to the branch in the local town, plus one telephone call to the branch to relay instructions from the telephone help line on exactly how to process the Power of Attorney. (Yes, the telephone help line man told me which electronic form the branch had to fill in for an EPA, and told me to ring the branch and tell them what to do !! )

    This was followed by ten telephone calls to the help line (2 hours 3 minutes, and charged £2:45.) to get the account up and running because the branch had given me a standard “user name” for the account and I needed a special “POA user name.”
    I complained to the Chairman and was offered £50 to cover my expenses, (and £60 from another bank).

    I won’t bore you with the other stories…

    Incidentally during this period I sent seven letters by Recorded Delivery. Three of these have never appeared on the web site as delivered, and one would appear to have never been signed for at all and disappeared from the system.

    At times you just think it is yourself… but thanks to TP you realise it happens to others.

    I do find it helps to share a problem.


  16. Clive

    Clive Registered User

    Nov 7, 2004
    Hi Craig

    You are so right about shopping around.

    The solicitor I purchased our EPA from charged a low £18 (years ago). You were not offered a seat, didn’t get past the reception area, and did the signing on what had been a shop counter, but the price was much lower than anywhere else.

    The solicitor from whom I purchased the EPA had closed by the time I wanted a certified copy of the registered EPA so I went to another solicitor who is using the same name. When I mentioned I had been to the old solicitor many years before the new receptionist simple didn’t want to be bothered, and I left without having the EPA copied.

    I rang a solicitor in my local town (who advertises no win no fee) and he said there would be no charge for a certified copy. The logic was that having been into his office to get my free certified copy I would use him if I needed proper solicitors' work in the future, and I would also tell my friends.

    The problem is that when you are a carer you don’t have the time to get a lot of quotes.


  17. CraigC

    CraigC Registered User

    Mar 21, 2003
    #17 CraigC, Nov 6, 2007
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2007
    And that is why I never let the original EPA leave my sight. It has caused me no end of problems (insisting that they use a certified copy), but I cannot face it getting lost again. Certified copies are the way to go, but you may need to put up a fight.

    Kind Regards
  18. Margaret W

    Margaret W Registered User

    Apr 28, 2007
    North Derbyshire
    Eh, folks, this smacks of the Pension Service too. I am apparently an Appointee for my mum, not an Attorney, despite them needing the orginal of the POA which my husband took to their Manchester office, no, I am an appointee. Despite that, every time I ring them I have to confirm mum's date of birth and 95 other items before anyone will speak to me.

    My current query is re attendance allowance. I know she is entitled to it at the full rate of £64.50 a week. I have a letter telling me so. It is payable from 4th July, but not for some period when she was in hospital. Okay. She left hospital on 3 August and moved straight into a care home, self-funded. I got back pay for 7 weeks from 4 July, and was told there was further back pay till 21 October. No sign of it yet. I was then told the AA would be paid with her pension from 22 October, and indeed it was that week. But the following two weeks, no AA. 14 phone calls and I am told the AA people have requests that the Pensions People cease payment and collect any over payments. I query this, and am told, after about 6 phone calls, that the AA people have told them to stop payments of AA. I ask what document or email they have telling them that. They can't tell me cos "There is nothing on file". So why stop payment?

    Oh, it doesn't matter. I eventually find a man with half a brain, who tells me the Pension lot should not have cancelled payment of AA, he has faxed them all the documents, and I will be getting the back payment of £258.

    It just annoys me that they can just knock off £64.50 from someone's income and not even tell them.

    Well, on to another day.


  19. Helena

    Helena Registered User

    May 24, 2006

    The entire problem with a large number of staff employed by DSS/pensions/etc is they lack a whole brain never mind 1/2 of one

    Its strange though that they insisted on original POA in your case plus say you are an appointee when with self same agencies i had none of that nonsense when dealing with my Mothers affairs last year other than AA originally being paid separately and then lumped in with her pension
  20. CraigC

    CraigC Registered User

    Mar 21, 2003
    Just to update, I am now in the full throws of registering the registered EPA with everyone.

    My experience so far has showed me that it is not down to the particular banks or companies that I deal with BUT the individual on the other end of the phone.

    My current advice is that if you find someone helpful, get their name and number and make sure you deal with them every time. Unfortunately it seems to be down to individuals rather than particular banks.

    So far of the 10 companies that we've dealt with only one has been consistently helpful. That to me is down to basic training. You should not rely on the good heart of a few individuals that work for you.

    Please be exceedingly grateful to those that are helpful!

    just my 2 cents worth

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