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Recently diagnosed and no Power of Attorney POA

ding2205

New member
Apr 9, 2022
3
0
Hi everyone👋
Looking for some guidance, my Mum has had an alzheimers diagnosis around 2 months ago (delayed by 2 years thanks to Covid-19). She is 67 and still working part time (though this is likely to stop due to safety concerns from her employer). She's had symptoms for 6 years but in the last 3 things have got increasingly, steadily worse, she now has hardly any short term memory, cannot undertake processes well or in some cases at all and is both in complete denial and apathetic.
She now cannot use her online banking app or seem cope with managing her finances. I've always helped and given advice in an informal capacity as I have worked and qualified as a financial advisor for 20 years. She is happy for me to use rhe app with her oversight and I'm always careful to document payments clearly but will I be able to get a POA? She has not lost mental capacity and understands about the POA but I'm concerned my brother (who owes her over £25k) will challenge any POA because he considers my involvement threatening as I will be taking steps to recover her money. Would he have a case at all?
My Mum will not press for the funds to be returned even though they were always a loan but we will desperately need them as she has very little funds left except the house. If we need any kind of care we would not be able to afford it. I know he has also run up over £10k of credit card debt when he borrowed her card and has never repaid a penny. I'm at my wits end, I don't want to go to the Police as that feels extreme and I know it will upset my Mum but I feel he is now trying to use her diagnosis to somehow write off his debt to her. I can evidence all the money gone to him from 3-6 years he has been taking.
 

Banjomansmate

Registered User
Jan 13, 2019
4,075
0
Dorset
It is up to your Mum to donate Power of Attorney to who she wishes so if she wants that to be just to you there is nothing your brother can do about it. If she still has capacity then it needs to be done a.s.a.p. You can help her by doing it on line but if you think your brother would query it then it (they, both finance and health & welfare) can be done by a solicitor who would have confirmed it was what your Mum requested.
 

SERENA50

Registered User
Jan 17, 2018
135
0
Hi everyone👋
Looking for some guidance, my Mum has had an alzheimers diagnosis around 2 months ago (delayed by 2 years thanks to Covid-19). She is 67 and still working part time (though this is likely to stop due to safety concerns from her employer). She's had symptoms for 6 years but in the last 3 things have got increasingly, steadily worse, she now has hardly any short term memory, cannot undertake processes well or in some cases at all and is both in complete denial and apathetic.
She now cannot use her online banking app or seem cope with managing her finances. I've always helped and given advice in an informal capacity as I have worked and qualified as a financial advisor for 20 years. She is happy for me to use rhe app with her oversight and I'm always careful to document payments clearly but will I be able to get a POA? She has not lost mental capacity and understands about the POA but I'm concerned my brother (who owes her over £25k) will challenge any POA because he considers my involvement threatening as I will be taking steps to recover her money. Would he have a case at all?
My Mum will not press for the funds to be returned even though they were always a loan but we will desperately need them as she has very little funds left except the house. If we need any kind of care we would not be able to afford it. I know he has also run up over £10k of credit card debt when he borrowed her card and has never repaid a penny. I'm at my wits end, I don't want to go to the Police as that feels extreme and I know it will upset my Mum but I feel he is now trying to use her diagnosis to somehow write off his debt to her. I can evidence all the money gone to him from 3-6 years he has been taking.
Hi

If your mum has capacity to make decisions then she can choose to appoint you to act on your own as her attorney.

You can carry on keeping records etc. Your brother may choose to challenge in some way but what would he be able to challenge ? If your mum has capacity , her decision will stand. if you have accurate records and your mum has chosen you to act for her if she sometimes cannot what would he be challenging ? You could always seek some legal advice as well. You can do the forms on line.
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
18,427
0
South coast
A diagnosis of dementia does not mean that they cannot consent to giving POA. If you think that your brother will challenge this, then it is best (though more expensive) to go through a solicitor as solicitors have to check that 1) its what they want and 2) they have the capacity to decide.
Get on and organise it ASAP, before the capacity is lost.
Do organise both Finances and Health&Welfare POA, not just the Finances.
 

Grannie G

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 3, 2006
76,043
0
Kent
My husband consented to a POA after diagnosis. The solicitor who arranged it checked with my husband privately to ensure he knew what he was signing.

My mother also agreed to a POA after diagnosis.

If it is challenged the solicitor might be able to identify financial abuse.
 

MartinWL

Registered User
Jun 12, 2020
2,029
0
65
London
I agree with all the others that your mum can make POA with you as the sole attorney if she has capacity. You say she understands what a POA is so she probably does have capacity. I also agree that having a solicitor prepare and action the POA would be good protection from any future allegation of undue influence. You should get on with this immediately.

On the matter of the loans made to your brother by your mother there is no suggestion in what you say that anything criminal took place. Your mother chose to lend him money, it appears, and that's perfectly legal. The police will not be involved. Once you have the POA and have registered it you must act in your mother's best interests so you will need to seek repayment of the loan back to her. It will be far better to negotiate an agreement if you can, perhaps a monthly payment until the debt is settled. If you cannot do that you can take civil action in the County Court to sue for the money but beware of the practical issues here. If your brother has no assets you may never get the cash.

There is also the issue of deliberate deprivation of assets if your mother has to have care funded by the local authority in the future. Litigation in the county court might at least demonstrate that you as POA have tried to get the money back and that this wasn't a scam to avoid paying for care and keep the money in the family. Seen from the council's perspective it might look like that.
 

MaNaAk

Registered User
Jun 19, 2016
7,541
0
Essex
Hi everyone👋
Looking for some guidance, my Mum has had an alzheimers diagnosis around 2 months ago (delayed by 2 years thanks to Covid-19). She is 67 and still working part time (though this is likely to stop due to safety concerns from her employer). She's had symptoms for 6 years but in the last 3 things have got increasingly, steadily worse, she now has hardly any short term memory, cannot undertake processes well or in some cases at all and is both in complete denial and apathetic.
She now cannot use her online banking app or seem cope with managing her finances. I've always helped and given advice in an informal capacity as I have worked and qualified as a financial advisor for 20 years. She is happy for me to use rhe app with her oversight and I'm always careful to document payments clearly but will I be able to get a POA? She has not lost mental capacity and understands about the POA but I'm concerned my brother (who owes her over £25k) will challenge any POA because he considers my involvement threatening as I will be taking steps to recover her money. Would he have a case at all?
My Mum will not press for the funds to be returned even though they were always a loan but we will desperately need them as she has very little funds left except the house. If we need any kind of care we would not be able to afford it. I know he has also run up over £10k of credit card debt when he borrowed her card and has never repaid a penny. I'm at my wits end, I don't want to go to the Police as that feels extreme and I know it will upset my Mum but I feel he is now trying to use her diagnosis to somehow write off his debt to her. I can evidence all the money gone to him from 3-6 years he has been taking.
Dear @DebRidley,

Welcome to the forum. I completed dad's POA for finance just after his diagnosis. He was happy for me to do this after I said I could help him look after his money and pay the bills. POA for Health was done a while later when dad's Alzheimer's was severe but he had some capacity. I told my siblings about the POAs and they were happy with me as attorney especially as one of them lived two hundred miles away. You need to do the finance POA as soon as possible as the others have suggested but you need a solicitor if your brother has issues.

MaNaAk
 

ding2205

New member
Apr 9, 2022
3
0
It is up to your Mum to donate Power of Attorney to who she wishes so if she wants that to be just to you there is nothing your brother can do about it. If she still has capacity then it needs to be done a.s.a.p. You can help her by doing it on line but if you think your brother would query it then it (they, both finance and health & welfare) can be done by a solicitor who would have confirmed it was what your Mum requested.
I'm just struggling with the costs, I can do the forms online but it's the other person who needs to sign...we have such a small family and she really has no friends. Do you think my best friend who has known my Mum all her life would be a problem to validate that she understands it?
I agree with all the others that your mum can make POA with you as the sole attorney if she has capacity. You say she understands what a POA is so she probably does have capacity. I also agree that having a solicitor prepare and action the POA would be good protection from any future allegation of undue influence. You should get on with this immediately.

On the matter of the loans made to your brother by your mother there is no suggestion in what you say that anything criminal took place. Your mother chose to lend him money, it appears, and that's perfectly legal. The police will not be involved. Once you have the POA and have registered it you must act in your mother's best interests so you will need to seek repayment of the loan back to her. It will be far better to negotiate an agreement if you can, perhaps a monthly payment until the debt is settled. If you cannot do that you can take civil action in the County Court to sue for the money but beware of the practical issues here. If your brother has no assets you may never get the cash.

There is also the issue of deliberate deprivation of assets if your mother has to have care funded by the local authority in the future. Litigation in the county court might at least demonstrate that you as POA have tried to get the money back and that this wasn't a scam to avoid paying for care and keep the money in the family. Seen from the council's perspective it might look like that.
God that's another fun thing to consider, the councils view. Monthly repayment would never work, it is around £20k so we would never get it back quickly enough. Trouble is I'll be forced to sell her house sooner to pay for care because of his selfish actions.
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
18,427
0
South coast
I can do the forms online but it's the other person who needs to sign...we have such a small family and she really has no friends. Do you think my best friend who has known my Mum all her life would be a problem to validate that she understands it?
Yes, I would think so - it has to be someone who has known he well (ie not just a passing acquaintance) for at least two years.
Monthly repayment would never work, it is around £20k so we would never get it back quickly enough. Trouble is I'll be forced to sell her house sooner to pay for care because of his selfish actions
Sometimes it is better to sell the house early anyway so that you are not paying insurance, utilities, maintenance etc on an empty house that she will not be coming back to. I was surprised how quickly mums bungalow started to deteriorate once it was empty. There were problems with the deeds which took a while to sort out and by the time I sold it all the wallpaper was peeling off the walls.
 

MartinWL

Registered User
Jun 12, 2020
2,029
0
65
London
God that's another fun thing to consider, the councils view. Monthly repayment would never work, it is around £20k so we would never get it back quickly enough. Trouble is I'll be forced to sell her house sooner to pay for care because of his selfish actions.
I am sure you are right but the question will be whether a monthly installment over many years is the best you can hope for. It would certainly be better than an action in court for a payment of £20k if there is no hope of actually receiving the money. Sometimes half a cake is better than no cake. You will when the time comes probably need expert advice on the specifics of the case. In the meantime quietly gather any information you can about what assets your brother has.
 

Dunroamin

Registered User
May 5, 2019
256
0
UK
I think we need a national campaign to educate about POA's and the fact we ALL should have one. Illness or no.
 

Jaded'n'faded

Registered User
Jan 23, 2019
3,190
0
High Peak
The problem is that loans within a family are often informal. (My son asks me every so often, 'Mum, can you lend me £20?' Of course, there is never any expectation that he will pay me back but I suppose it sounds a bit odd/presumptive to say 'Can you give me £20?')

Obviously the sum your brother has borrowed from your mum is a lot more, but it could well be that when the loan was made, there was no concrete arrangement as to when it would be paid back. If you get PoA sorted in your name and intend to demand instant repayment of the loan, I'm not surprised your brother is concerned! That isn't to say you shouldn't attempt to get the money back but surely, a repayment schedule would be far more reasonable than a demand for the whole lot. It's unlikely the money is sitting in his bank so how could he repay it in full? Even if you took him to court, he could reasonably claim he doesn't have the full amount so you'd end up with a repayment schedule anyway. Plus, you run the risk of him saying, 'Mum didn't want me to pay it back,' which you'd be unable to challenge because who knows, she might have said exactly that. And you've said your mum would not press for return of the money. Ditto with the credit card - he just has to say, 'Mum gave me permission/said it was fine and she wanted to help me! She knows I don't have the funds to repay it - it was never expected that I would!'

Mums do things like that.

I'd say definitely get your mum to do the PoA in your name so you can look after her money from now on but honestly, I'd write off the money she loaned/gave to your brother. At best you'll only get a monthly repayment.
 

Mydarlingdaughter

Registered User
Oct 25, 2019
199
0
North East England UK
Two different issues going on there,

get on and get her to sign POA, appointing you as attorney
If you are happy to do the PoA and your Mum wants it, then do it asap. I also think its good to get it done by solicitor because then the brother cannot challenge it. Having a diagnosis of dementia does not automatically mean you lack capacity.
 

try again

Registered User
Jun 21, 2018
441
0
Agree with jaded. Get the poas sorted and unless there is any documentation regarding the loan, you'll never get anywhere in court