Siblings and Ateendance Allowance

Discussion in 'I care for a person with dementia' started by Annie55, Feb 24, 2017.

  1. Annie55

    Annie55 Registered User

    Feb 24, 2017
    I'm really sorry my first post is so long but I just needed to see if anyone else has had such awful treatment by siblings.
    My husband and I have been doing the majority of care for my mother in law. Lots of practical jobs and social outings.
    I take her to Alzheimer's drop in cafe on a Monday. We discussed a few things with one of the members of staff about different things and eventually they told us about the attendance allowance.

    My husband told his siblings about this and they were not happy as they felt she has plenty of money to care for herself and refused to agree to apply for this. We left it at that. A few months later we were at a meeting with the nurse discussing needs and the nurse said so you'll have the attendance allowance and of course we said no. She said my mother in law could have applied for this soon after her diagnosis.

    We thought then this was then HER RIGHT to have this no matter what we all felt. We explained what it was to her and she said she would like us to apply. We did but without the approval of siblings. They were furious and extremely unkind to my husband.
    My mother in law was awarded the higher rate which we were surprised about.
    My husbands siblings saw the form that was filled in with the help of Alzheimer's Scotland and they accused my husband of fraudulence and got advice from a solicitor to say he needed to step down as power of attorney or they would take it further. We are devastated at the accusations and has made us both ill. My husband stood down as PofA.
    Everything we do is for making sure mum is safe, fed and loved.
  2. marionq

    marionq Registered User

    Apr 24, 2013
    What a bunch of idiots! The AA would not have been given if she did not merit it. The money can be used towards her care either daycare or long term care. Are they afraid you will benefit from it in some way? I would stay well away from such appalling relatives. Who needs them?
  3. Margi29

    Margi29 Registered User

    Oct 31, 2016
    I so wish my mum had got attendance allowance years ago ( she missed out on approximately £9,000 ) my brother would not claim in mums right.

    Also when dad was ill (passed away now ) we didn't think he was entitled to any, turns out he was !!!

    Attendance allowance is not means tested, therefore it is there to help with care, outings etc... regardless to how much your MIL has in bank. Ps Also for you when you take her out anywhere.

    Now my mum gets it, I see it as her right. After working from 14 years old to 75 she has put enough into the system.

    You have done the right thing by claiming, awful for your husband that siblings decided to get a solicitor involved.

    I would take a step back and let them see just how difficult it can be coping with MIL.

    You both don't want to end up upset and ill with all this stress

    Take care
  4. Linbrusco

    Linbrusco Registered User

    Mar 4, 2013
    Auckland...... New Zealand
    #4 Linbrusco, Feb 24, 2017
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2017
    I'm not from the UK, but isnt your AA, an entitlement?
    What do they object to... because your MIL has funds, they dont want her to be as seen taking any form of government asistance, or the fact that they were miffed at your DH having POA in the first place, or applying anyway after they had said No. If a POA had to discuss everything with siblings/family, and get approval on everything it could be a nightmare.

    I always thought that a POA always had to have that persons best interests in mind, how can applying for AA not be anything other, and how could a lawyer construe that otherwise to make your husband stand down as POA.
    I know here in New Zealand to have a POA overturned is a legal process involving the courts.

    Your MIL would have made your husband POA, with intention, and as you are the ones caring for her and not them, it also makes every sense.
  5. Shedrech

    Shedrech Volunteer Moderator

    Dec 15, 2012
    hello Annie55
    a warm welcome to TP - I'm glad you've found this wonderful community as you clearly are in need of some support
    I'm at a loss to understand your husband's siblings' stance - AA is not means tested, so you haven't had to give any information about his mother's finances - and if she has been awarded the higher rate, then she will be in need of a lot of care and, as you write, had a right to claim the AA (I am, of course, assuming that the form was filled in accurately describing her worst days and nights; maybe the siblings don't understand that this doesn't mean that their mother has those needs all day, every day) - as you point out, it is HER claim (OK you may have helped her a LOT, and taken advice on in filling out the form), it's not something she needs anyone's permission to apply for - and I don't see that anyone is generally so well off that the £82 a week isn't a welcome addition to put towards paying care fees

    do they really not believe that their mother's condition means that she has such a high level of care needs? sadly there are many accounts on the forum of the carer sibling being fully aware of their parent's situation, whereas the other siblings either can't see it (maybe not visiting very often) or are in denial and don't want to face up to the reality of what is happening - and it certainly isn't helpful for the carer sibling who badly needs support not criticism
    you say that your husband has stood down as POA - has this been done formally? - I'd urge you to look into that as it seems to me that he is the sibling who has his mother's best interests at heart, and given that she, as the donor, chose him to be her Attorney when she had the capacity to do so, she clearly trusted him - does this mean that the other siblings remain as Attorneys? or are they organising Deputyship?
    I think I'd write to the solicitor and point out that you have only helped to claim what your husband's mother is entitled to and that you don't appreciate being the object of these accusations of fraudulent activity, which are effectively libellous - I'd not want the solicitor to be under any illusion that you have behaved inappropriately
    I really hope that the siblings aren't trying to secure their 'inheritance' by keeping control of their mother's money; it is her money, for her use and benefit - and I hope that they provide as much support/care as you and your husband - maybe they need to take on the tasks that you've been doing, to see how much care their mother now needs
    sorry - I'm just ranting back at you - because I just fail to understand the other siblings' actions
    I hope writing your post and getting this off your chest has helped
    best wishes
  6. Bod

    Bod Registered User

    Aug 30, 2013
    Attendance Allowance is one of the few benefits that is not means tested, and is available to all.
    It's designed to help with care costs. It's not much in the general scheme of things, but does help most people.
    Just because some of the children, are all well off, it doesn't mean the parent is so well endowed.
    PoA, is granted by the Donor, and has nothing to do with any siblings!
    Awkward siblings are a right royal pain in the ***. However after being offered all the caring responsibility, often retreat, not very gracefully!

    Good luck
  7. Annie55

    Annie55 Registered User

    Feb 24, 2017
    Thank you

    Thank you all so much for your replies. Just got to rise above their bad behaviour and know we are trying our best to care for mum.
  8. Jessbow

    Jessbow Registered User

    Has someone else been appointed POA or has someone else just taken control of finances with out it ( potentially very dangerous)
  9. Annie55

    Annie55 Registered User

    Feb 24, 2017
    My husbands sister has power of attorney too but no one has replaced my husband.
  10. Ihtl

    Ihtl Registered User

    Jan 19, 2016
    Quite frankly, your in laws sound like stupid.
  11. Kevinl

    Kevinl Registered User

    Aug 24, 2013
    Hi Annie, welcome to TP
    Each time I read a thread like this it makes me see red and yet people post on here about it being hard as an only child. They never seem to see that when you're faced with a situation like your husband is you curse the fact the siblings even exist.
    They don't think it's "nice" that she should be getting a benefit from the state so they threaten him with lawyers, accuse him of fraud and make him end his PoA, honestly you couldn't make it up, after all you've done and are doing the sheer ingratitude of there...words fail me (and the site's terms and conditions forbid) me saying what I really think. Any only child want a sibling now?:eek:
  12. Shedrech

    Shedrech Volunteer Moderator

    Dec 15, 2012
    hi Annie55
    just a bit concerned about the POA
    have you checked with OPG Scotland that this is OK - I believe in some circumstances an Attorney 'resigning' might mean that the POA isn't in effect any longer eg if the Attorneys were originally to act jointly - and a replacement, as I understand it, has to be mentioned in the original
    I can't, however, find the relevant info on the website
    best wishes
  13. Annie55

    Annie55 Registered User

    Feb 24, 2017
    It's hurt him to his very core that they did all this consulting lawyers behind his back. He found this out when his two brothers asked him to meet up and talk about mum only for them to inform of all the above and then expect us to be all let's move forward and be loving siblings.
  14. Annie55

    Annie55 Registered User

    Feb 24, 2017
    Thank you once again for your support and helpful comments. My heart breaks to see my husband to hurt.
  15. oilovlam

    oilovlam Registered User

    Aug 2, 2015
    South East
    This isn't about Attendance allowance (AA) is it? Someone didn't want your husband as POA and saw an opportunity to put pressure on him.

    Anyone can apply for AA, even the Queen. It isn't means tested. There is nothing to stop you applying. In fact as POA you possibly have an obligation to long as the information in the application is given in good faith then no harm can be done.

    I'm surprised a lawyer/solicitor would even want to get involved.

    There are some forms that really test the limits of 'good faith'....applying for a Blue Badge is one of the most contradictory forms I have ever seen. Basically if the person can stand up and walk more than 3 inches you don't get a blue theory. That's when you need help from the 'experts' on how to fill in the form.
  16. la lucia

    la lucia Registered User

    Jul 3, 2011
    Hello, what an awful situation.

    Dementia is tough enough to deal with without these selfish antics from siblings. And I wonder what exactly the solicitor was doing because whoever they are they're not following the letter of the law.

    There's only one caveat to this. If the POAs were issued as 'jointly' or 'jointly and severally'.... If the latter each POA can act independently, if the former then both POA's signatures are required.

    Either way I'd question the competence of the lawyer.

    Meanwhile, I really think you need professional advice before you do anything so my suggestion is please ring the Alzheimer's Society helpline ASAP. Here's the number 0300 222 11 22

    Best of luck with this and I hope you find some resolution.
  17. nicoise

    nicoise Registered User

    Jun 29, 2010
    That's what I thought from reading your opening post.

    It seems rather odd since your OH won't be benefitting from the AA, it goes to his Mum directly. If it was going in OH's pocket, well perhaps they might have some point.

    I'm afraid when it comes to money and control being the prime interest, I'd suggest stepping back from doing too much hands-on caring. That sounds awful to say, but those who make all the fuss and conflict should be handling the lions share of that... not to the point of neglect, but they can't have the best of the situation without any of the hard slog.

    I wish you the best - but sadly it is very difficult to ever repair broken family relations after such conflicts. Look after yourselves in this sad story.
  18. mumbasi

    mumbasi Registered User

    Sep 1, 2013
    This is so awful. I find it unbelievable that siblings can behave in this way, however TP has unfortunately too many instances of this being the case.

    How can a solicitor accept that this caring son should not be POA? Perhaps it is different in Scotland I don't know but I also thought that if the attorneys were appointed jointly then they must agree unanimously on every decision and if they can't agree then they can only make that decision by going to court, and if one attorney becomes unable to act then the LPA stops working unless at least one replacement attorney has been appointed. If jointly and severally then if one resigned then the LPA will still work.

    I am so lucky that my other 3 siblings are nothing but supportive of all that myself and my sister's son do on her behalf. (Fingers crossed).
  19. Peirre

    Peirre Registered User

    Aug 26, 2015
    I can only echo the sentiments of the previous posts.
    However setting aside the cash values, AA is one of those key benefits that give access to more specific help, benefits and assistance inc.
    Council tax reduction
    Blue badge (higher rate AA)
    Warm home discount
    Service charge rebate (British Gas).
    And many more
  20. Annie55

    Annie55 Registered User

    Feb 24, 2017
    Thank you all again.

    I didn't know that it opened up avenues to blue badge etc. We're almost too frightened to mention any other support that she maybe entitled to for fear of more put downs.

    We told the siblings that mum would be exempt from council tax too we applied for this and she has been given the exemption and it will be back dated. No doubt we will be in trouble for that too.

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