1. Expert Q&A: Benefits - Weds 23 October, 3-4pm

    Our next expert Q&A will be on the topic of benefits. It will be hosted by Lauren from our Knowledge Services team. She'll be answering your questions on Wednesday 23 October between 3-4pm.

    You can either post your question >here< or email them to us at talkingpoint@alzheimers.org.uk and we'll be happy to ask them on your behalf.

  1. Vicki1975

    Vicki1975 Registered User

    Aug 31, 2015
    8
    Swindon, Wiltshire
    Hello,

    My grandfather has severe dementia. In the last 9 months the man I knew has gone. It's happened so fast it's left me reeling and not knowing what to do.

    My grandmother is his carer and she wants it to stay that way for as long as possible, but she's 91 and I worry about her. I should explain they live 2 hours drive away in a small village. I'm the closest relative, so I'm trying to sort as much as I can for her.

    I've got her to set up an alert card so if anything happens to her or him I get a call and I can go down there but I don't know about the legal stuff! At the moment all bills etc are being dealt with by my grandmother. I'm assuming as his wife she can continue doing that without Power of Attorney?? Is there anything I should be advising her on? Any legal stuff we've not taken into consideration?

    Sorry if this sounds vague! I feel like I'm in a thick fog and I can't see what I need to do!

    Thanks
    Vicki
     
  2. kennedy1948

    kennedy1948 Registered User

    Oct 7, 2013
    58
    Huntingdon
    Hi Vicky,

    I am not entirely sure of this but I think it may be too late for your Grandmother to get Power of Attourney but I'm sure you will get the best guidance on the forum. When I got the POA for my husband he had to be of sound mind to sign the papers. Good luck to you and your Grandmother.


    Maggie
     
  3. Beate

    Beate Registered User

    May 21, 2014
    11,719
    Female
    London
    Unless they have a joint account or the bills are all in her name, she really needs to get POA for him (both finances and health while you are at it). Being a wife isn't enough, the bank could freeze his account if they think he lacks capacity. If he has already lost capacity, she could try a third party mandate on the bank account or being an appointee, and ultimately deputyship, but the latter is time-consuming and expensive.

    If he isn't getting Attendance Allowance, he should be applying for it, and following that, for council tax exemption on the grounds of severe mental impairment. You can ask the Alzheimer's Society, Age UK or CAB to help with filling in the forms. They can also advise on any other possible benefits.

    Does a will exist?
     
  4. Mrsbusy

    Mrsbusy Registered User

    Aug 15, 2015
    356
    A few suggestions I would consider:

    Try to get a POA ASAP for both of them, as the POA only kicks in when the person concerned wishes it to do so, not automatically. Maybe consider getting a health and welfare POA and and financial POA arranged for you to sort out their affairs when the person concerned feels it necessary, as don't forget at your grandmothers age she should also do this in case anything happens to her before your grandfather.

    I did read recently that the person with the dementia only has to have understanding at the moment in time that they sign the form, not all the time all day long, as long as they understand what the form signing entails it maybe possible.

    Have you asked your social services to carry out a Carers assessment. This will help them get Day Centre for Grandfather giving your Grandmother a few hours respite.
    It should also access an occupational therapist visit to see if adjustments can be made to the home if necessary or equipment to help them.

    I presume Grandmother is cooking etc for them, how about looking into getting hot meals delivered or Wiltshire farm foods to lighten her load.

    Have you thought about installing a key safe outside their house about £65 so if anyone needs to get in the key is available easily, good for emergencies.

    Have you looked into their local Careline with the council, a system which is installed via the telephone line, the line operates 24/7 so if they need somebody urgently if a fall happened etc they just hit the pendant or wristband and they can speak to a human operator who can find out what the problem is and can send ambulance etc. this is where they keysafe comes into its own, as the operator will previously have made a note of the code to access the key and will inform the medical services. Thus is vital as your grandfather may not be able to call any one for help so the Careline is good for peace of mind.
    Maybe enquire discreetly that their will is up to date and where it is kept.
    I have made this sound quite easy to achieve all this, but being older etc you may find there will be resistance to this all being done as I am having with my own parents.
    I know what needs to be done in my situation but am met with denial and insistence that they are coping so good luck.

    Another thing worth enquiring about is she may get a reduction on her council tax if Attendance allowance awarded, water rates maybe reduced too if you ask, and if incontinence is a problem there is a service to help with provisions for that too.

    Good luck and keep us posted.
     
  5. Beate

    Beate Registered User

    May 21, 2014
    11,719
    Female
    London
    Just a slight correction: once a lasting power of attorney is registered with the OPG, it's immediately usable if the donor agrees, or once he has lost capacity. But it has to be made while the donor has still capacity, so if it's at all possible, don't hang around.
     
  6. Vicki1975

    Vicki1975 Registered User

    Aug 31, 2015
    8
    Swindon, Wiltshire
    Thank you!! I'm going to print all this off and go through it so I don't miss anything.

    She's just got attendance allowance and is waiting for a carers assessment with her GP. I did wonder about Council tax. I'll let her know so we can sort that.

    He does have times of day when he understands what's going on so I might be able to sort POA. I did think it was needed but wasn't sure as I've never had to deal with this before.

    Thank you all. This is a huge help x
     
  7. arielsmelody

    arielsmelody Registered User

    Jul 16, 2015
    514
    If you go through the process of setting up an LPA for your grandfather, make sure that you are also named and that you and your grandmother can act jointly and severally, and get one set up for your grandmother as well. Even though your grandmother is coping at the moment and you won't need to use the POA, it will be there if you need it in the future.
     
  8. chanelno5

    chanelno5 Registered User

    Jun 14, 2012
    12
    enduring power of attorney form warning

    My brother and sister are attorneys for my mother and the solicitor filled in the form and they signed it . They did not notice he had ticked 'jointly' rather than 'jointly and severally' so now for any visits to the bank both of them have to go - my sister works nights and has to sleep during the day - and also they can't have a card or cheque book. I am my mother's carer.
     

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