Finances in a mess

Discussion in 'Legal and financial issues' started by tedsmum, Aug 13, 2006.

  1. tedsmum

    tedsmum Registered User

    Jun 28, 2006
    34
    Went to see my Dad in a mental health assesment unit to be met by a payments officer from the local council. Dad has to be moved into a NH and as he owns his own house and has savings suddenly they are interested in his money.He is still paying household bills from direct debits being taken from his current account including gas electricity council tax etc. Now other bills are starting to come in and its been suggested we pay them and claim it back later. Also as his condition has deteriorated and I was told I have to get a Court of Protection Order which could take up to three months and cost £500.Are we really liable to pay all this from our own pockets. I have his debit card and PIN and considering withdrawing an amount and putting it in a seperate account to cover expenses.Has anyone done this and where do you think I would stand legally.
    Don't want to do the wrong thing but he would be horrified by all this.Always paid his own way.never owed anyone anything and has never claimed any benefits in his life.
    Sorry to ramble on but its just so unfair.

    Christine
     
  2. Margarita

    Margarita Registered User

    Feb 17, 2006
    10,824
    london
    What if you do not have the Money


    I would say do that to your own discretion keeping a record of all outgoing
     
  3. Kayla

    Kayla Registered User

    May 14, 2006
    621
    Kent
    I think you should get legal or expert advice, but I don't think you should be paying for your Dad from your own money. Tell them you can't afford it. My MIL lived in her own home until she had a couple of spells in hospital. She was 91 and was diagnosed with a cancerous growth in her abdomen. She was not strong enough to return home, but refused to go into the respite centre. She would only be allowed to stay there for up to four weeks.
    In the end, she agreed to go into the private Nursing Home, where her sister had been, but Top Up Fees needed to be paid by a third party. My BIL arranged everything without consulting us, and we had to pay half of the top up fees. She was only there for two weeks before she died, but I dread to think how much the top up fees would have been if she had been in the NH for several months.
    The silly thing was that she had plenty of money to pay the top up fees herself, but less than £12,000 required for being self-funding. Relatives shouldn't be pressured into paying expenses or care fees, after all even if the money is paid back, it would still lose interest in their savings account.
    Kayla
     
  4. Helena

    Helena Registered User

    May 24, 2006
    715
    As you have the debit card and Pin number .......use it and keep a record of everything you do

    Can you not get him to sign an EPA form ........it only needs a signature in front of a witness the rest of it you can fill in

    With the EPA you do not even need to register it £120 because Banks etc will all accept it and transfer control to yourself
     
  5. Brucie

    Brucie Registered User

    Jan 31, 2004
    12,413
    near London
    #5 Brucie, Aug 13, 2006
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2006
    First thing tomorrow I suggest you contact the Alzheimer's Society Help line, and/or your local Citizen's Advice bureau.

    While it is possible to bend rules when completing an EPA, the person who is the subject is supposed to understand exactly what is happening, and why. Just getting a scrawl from someone who does not understand is a trifle dangerous and open to question by the Court of Protection..

    Once the person is past the stage of being able to do anything, the EPA needs to be registered. You can't simply leave it open when they are at that stage. The attorney has responsibilities that are not light ones.

    Once registered, you may be called upon, as attorney, to produce accounts, so Helena is quite correct - anything at all that you pay out of his money should be meticulously accounted for.

    Ideally if you do take out his money into a separate account it should be in his name. To set up such an account you need a registered EPA.

    You should NOT - repeat NOT- have to pay out of your own money. The council should keep account of what is owed and only be repaid once the EPA is in place.

    All just my own understandings - do make those phone calls to people who really know, tomorrow. Best of luck.
     
  6. jarnee

    jarnee Registered User

    Mar 18, 2006
    181
    leicestershire
    I agree with the above.
    You don't have to pay from your own pocket unless you choose a NH which is very expensive and then you pay top up fees. Even then, it should come out of your dad's money.

    When we went through this with my dad. I'm certain there was a clause that said you have 12 weeks grace to sort finances out before you start receiving bills and having to pay for anything (you may have to pay for the 12 weeks, but not till you've sorted stuff out, if that makes sense)
    Anyway, It is imperative you speak to someone independent who knows about these things. Alzheimer's Society is an excellent place to start ... I have found them very helpful and endlessly patient with me to make sure I understand everything

    Good Luck

    Jarnee
    xxxxxx
     
  7. pammy14

    pammy14 Registered User

    Dec 5, 2005
    103
    leicestershire
    I have done everything without registering. The solicitor didn't say anything about that when we signed for the POA and no-one has asked us - so we didn't know we had to . have changed bank account etc, so can i expect the arm of the law on me?
     
  8. Margarita

    Margarita Registered User

    Feb 17, 2006
    10,824
    london
    #8 Margarita, Aug 13, 2006
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2006

    lol I was wondering that :eek: :eek: glad you said that
    Broke the fear


    Brucie what does wuaestion mean ?

    PS

    **** I feel a panic attack coming on as I can not remember or if the stamp on the EPO that the solicitor done for me was registered before mum AD or after I can now see myself behind bars
     
  9. noelphobic

    noelphobic Registered User

    Feb 24, 2006
    3,452
    Liverpool
    My understanding is that during the 12 week period the value of the person's home is not taken into account and therefore they could qualify to be local authority funded if the value of their other assets was not above the minimum allowed.

    As far as the top-up fees go then I believe that technically if the person has below £12500 then the relatives are supposed to pay. That seems ridiculous to me - if my mum had £12500 in the bank and I had nothing why should I pay? Also top-up fees are only supposed to be charged to someone who is local authority funded if they have chosen to go in a home that is more expensive than the maximum the local authority will pay. When we were first looking for a care home for my mum there were only 2 places with vacancies and both charged top-up fees. As she was self-funding that wasn't really an issue but if she wasn't I would have fought very hard for myself and my sister NOT to have to pay the top-up fees. (We also supposedly have a brother but it would have been a waste of time even asking him!)
     
  10. tedsmum

    tedsmum Registered User

    Jun 28, 2006
    34
    Yet again thanks to everyone. It's so easy to let everything get on top of you isn't it. What's the worst that could happen? Everyone of us wants to do the right thing and play by the rules I suppose thats why we're all on this site and our relatives are all in this position.
    Great advice I feel a whole lot better tonight
    XXX
     
  11. Brucie

    Brucie Registered User

    Jan 31, 2004
    12,413
    near London
    I'm a one finger typer - so it was a typo! meant to be "question"
    I have found that it is possible to use an unregistered EPA to change existing bank accounts, but that banks refuse to open new accounts without the EPA being registered. All to do with preventing money laundering so they have told me.

    This may vary from area to area and from bank to bank.

    I'm currently trying to invest some of Jan's money in a new ISA for her, but can't open the ISA unless I post the registered EPA to them. I am wary of posting such a critical document given the unsafeness of the postal system, even for registered items.

    All the confusion is why i suggested contacting the AS and CAB. I just don't recommend making one's own interpretation of how an EPA should be completed. I took legal advice to ensure that everything was done correctly because my main aim is to protect Jan's interests.
     
  12. kazlou

    kazlou Registered User

    Feb 3, 2006
    75
    Surrey
    Hi,
    Try looking at this web site

    WWW.************

    They were a great help for me when the hospital told me they could no longer keep my father there and would need a nursing home. The site hold lots of information.
    Kaz.
     
  13. Brucie

    Brucie Registered User

    Jan 31, 2004
    12,413
    near London
    NB regarding registration of an EPA.

    The Public Guardianship web site says
    Check out http://www.guardianship.gov.uk/theservice/faqs.htm#1
     
  14. SallyB

    SallyB Registered User

    May 7, 2005
    60
    Hi, Hope I am not repeating what has already been said but we have just been through all of this.

    Have you been told that you donot have to pay anything and that includes the top up. I was verbally threatened by a social worker when Dad was in an assessment unit because I refused to sign her paperwork. When i said i would seek legal advice she backed off however it was the welfare rights guy who came from social services that told me if i had of signed the form i would of been personally liable for Dad's £475 a week fee.

    Long story short, i refused to sign and we went onto deferred payment i still didn't sign for them. We started applying for recievership. Dad became ill and passed away but he was in the home from May 25th until August 6th. We still have paid nothing as yet.

    Dad was self funding, or will be when his estate is now sorted. They can offer deferred payments.

    Sorry if you know all of this.

    Sally
     
  15. Norman

    Norman Registered User

    Oct 9, 2003
    4,348
    Birmingham Hades
    Bruce
    did you not have copies?
    When our EPAs were registered we had 3 copies,I have used one so far which went to claim the AA higher payments.
    The original is with our Financial adviser.
    Norman
     
  16. connie

    connie Registered User

    Mar 7, 2004
    9,519
    Frinton-on-Sea
    As far as I understand it, you have an original document (EPA) and certified copies from your solicitor. However only the original has the seal from the Court of Protection after registration.

    I had trouble with the Inland Revenue, when they mislaid our original after they said they could not accept copies after regisration. (We did ultimately get it back, thank goodness).

    I am cautious now not to let it leave my possession.
     
  17. tedsmum

    tedsmum Registered User

    Jun 28, 2006
    34
    Sally,I also refused to sign anything but did feel under pressure at a time when all my energies are concentrated on looking after my dad.It just feels that it would be easier to sign and not have to worry about finances but I know it's not what he would want.It was put across as if I had no choice but I will contact Alzheimers Society tomorrow and probably a financial advisor.also take a look at the website mentioned.Don't know what I did to fill my days before this!!!
    Thanks to everyone

    Christine
     
  18. Brucie

    Brucie Registered User

    Jan 31, 2004
    12,413
    near London
    Hi Norman,

    when we made out the EPA at first, our solicitor provided several notarised versions that we used until we had the thing registered.

    The Court of Protection sent back the original EPA, stamped, but as I would need to pay a solicitor to notarise it in copy form, I have not done it. In any case, the ISA company in question insists it wants the original.
     
  19. noelphobic

    noelphobic Registered User

    Feb 24, 2006
    3,452
    Liverpool
    Brucie, does the company that you want to open the ISA with have branches? If they do then will they not allow you to take the document into the branch. They shoud then be able to check it, photocopy it and give it you back. Obviously if it's a company that only operates by phone or internet then you would not be able to do this but it's an idea otherwise.

    Otherwise, I would suggest that you send it by Special Delivery.
     
  20. noelphobic

    noelphobic Registered User

    Feb 24, 2006
    3,452
    Liverpool
    My mum is also on deferred payments and has been for nearly 2 years now. In the beginning I wanted to sell the house but since she has moved into her nursing home I am glad that we didn't. Because she is on deferred payments then we are being charged as if she was Local Authority funded and therefore the fees are £450 per week approx. If the house was sold and she was classed as self funding then the fees would be £575 per week! I don't know if this is some kind of loophole or whether it will be picked up on when the day of reckoning comes but at the moment we are definitely not selling.
     

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