1. jasonmatkinson

    jasonmatkinson Registered User

    Jan 12, 2015
    1
    I'm new on this forum and so I'm not quite sure this is the correct forum.

    My mother has dementia and I have recently discovered she has been sold over £2000 of 'health' supplements which she does not need or use.

    Could someone advise me what protection the law offers my mother and what I can do to ensure a full refund from this company.

    Thankyou
     
  2. CJinUSA

    CJinUSA Registered User

    Jan 20, 2014
    1,127
    eastern USA
    You might try posting your question in the forum called Legal and financial issues. The people who post there really know what they are talking about. I'm sorry this has happened. I hope it gets resolved for you.
     
  3. Witzend

    Witzend Registered User

    Aug 29, 2007
    4,282
    SW London
    #3 Witzend, Jan 12, 2015
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2015
    I am not certain, but I have a feeling that unless the person has been deemed to lack capacity, the law takes the view that they are free to spend or waste their money as they wish. One thing you could do, which has been suggested on here before, is to scratch off the security code on her cards, so that she cannot order anything over the phone. If the company already has her card details, maybe you would have to 'lose' it and doctor the replacement.

    However, and I do not wish to be alarmist here, but I have recently gone into this sort of thing a lot over an elderly neighbour, who does not even have dementia, who has spent many thousands of pounds on lottery scams. And I have found out that unscrupulous companies, some of which specialise in toiletries and so called 'health' products, sell on the details of their customers, which then go on 'suckers lists', i.e. they are sold on to all sorts of 'lottery' and other scam artists, many based overseas, who have no qualms about relieving the vulnerable, and particularly the vulnerable elderly, of as much of their money as they can. A common ploy with the 'health' products would seem to be that they promise a large cash prize if the person keeps ordering again and again - the prize will of course never materialise - do you know if this is the case with your mother?

    If you do not already have a power of attorney in place, do please try to arrange it ASAP. And if you can, check her mail or get it redirected (you would need P of A or she would have to agree) before she is targeted by anyone else. My neighbour who has been completely hooked by the lottery scam was originally targeted by phone, by someone claiming to work for NatWest - it is a typical lie to get the person to trust them.

    I am very sorry if I have added to your worries, but as I have found out recently, there is a huge problem with this sort of thing, and since it seems so hard to prevent any of it unless the person has been deemed to lack capacity, it is necessary for relatives to be as vigilant as possible. It is possible to get a phone that will only allow certain numbers - I will try to locate a thread that mentions these.

    PS - there is something called True Call nuisance call blocker - it has been highly recommended by posters here.
     
  4. Beate

    Beate Registered User

    May 21, 2014
    11,481
    Female
    London
    I have a bog standard landline phone which allows me to programme certain numbers of friends and family into a group and then put the phone on silent, allowing only those numbers from that particular group to ring loudly when they call - all calls from other numbers cannot be heard. The only requirement is that you subscribe to caller display so the phone can identify which number is ringing. It has been an absolute godsend.
     
  5. chris53

    chris53 Registered User

    Nov 9, 2009
    2,930
    London
    Good evening Jason, firstly a warm welcome to Talking Point:)
    I am so sorry your mum has been sucked in by one of these "health" companies, even without dementia so many people start a trial offer only to find out that these "special offer"supplements are draining their bank accounts:eek: may I suggest,if you have not already done so, that you contact the company direct to explain the situation,they should have a customer service department or email address, they don't need to know if you have or have not got power of attorney, even better if you are there with mum and she gives them "permission" to talk to you, you could also contact (the card she uses) company and explain the situation, they may flag on the computer screen the spending she is doing with this company,if you tell them that mum is frail,elderly,vulnerable and this company is making her ill with worry..it just may tug a heart string!sorry i am not much help, so I hope someone will be along soon with more advice for you.
    Keep posting and please let us know how things are.
    Best wishes
    Chris
     
  6. chris53

    chris53 Registered User

    Nov 9, 2009
    2,930
    London
  7. Witzend

    Witzend Registered User

    Aug 29, 2007
    4,282
    SW London
    #7 Witzend, Jan 12, 2015
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2015
    Again I don't wish to be alarmist, but the sole purpose of some of these companies is to part the vulnerable from as much of their cash as possible, in which case telling them that the person has dementia may not be best. Of course this particular company may be on the level, but it does sound like one of those I've read about recently, which most certainly are not.

    There is a website called Think Jessica, about precisely this sort of thing, but I should warn that it does not make for comfortable reading.
     

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