1. Kingfisher1

    Kingfisher1 Registered User

    May 7, 2015
    54
    Kent
    Hello fellow carers, I need some advice please.

    My Brother-in-Law Harry is 92 years old, suffering from dementia (according to his carers, although he hasn't been formally diagnosed) and still living in his own home with carers coming in 4 times daily. He refused the financial assessment so has to pay the full charges which amount to roughly £230 per week. This has been the case since December when the carers first started coming in following a lengthy spell in hospital, and so far he has refused to pay for them because he says he doesn't think it is right that he's worked all his life for the money he has and now when he's old and needs help they want to take it from him.

    Anyway, he has now run up a debt of over £7000 and the council have sent in the debt collectors. I have POA for him and could easily arrange for the money to be paid but he says no, and if I do he will revoke the POA, he says he wants to go to court and stand up in front of the judge and say his piece and then that he's going to write to "The Papers" and tell them all about it and how disgraceful it is..

    Trying to get hold of his social worker is impossible, all I get is a recorded message saying all lines are busy and to try again later. This has been going on for several weeks now and I'm at my wits end. I would dearly love Harry to come and live with me and my son here in our home where he would have company and be warm and comfortable (his bungalow is very old and has damp and mildew growing up the walls) but so far he has resisted so the care fees just keep adding up!

    Does anyone have any advice they can give me please? How can I persuade him that he'd be much better off living here with his own room (en suite shower and loo) 3 meals a day, a car at his disposal if he would like me to take him out places, and someone to chat to instead of being left alone all day except for when the carers pop in to give him his meals and medication? He is virtually deaf now anyway and tells me he doesn't have a clue what they are saying as they are all "foreign"

    Thank you in advance.
     
  2. LadyA

    LadyA Registered User

    Oct 19, 2009
    13,540
    Ireland
    It sounds like (a) he does have dementia, and (b) it is progressing.
    First of all, maybe contact his GP and explain how things are. Next, I would write to the social services, outlining the situation and your failed efforts to contact the social worker.

    Several years ago I was asked by a couple for advice on how to persuade his mother (86, with dementia) to stop insisting on doing all the laundry - she was still using a non electric wringer washing machine!! With a "mangle " to squeeze the water out of the clothes! I told them to take a drill with a small bit and drill a few holes in the bottom of the machine, so she had to give up using it. Can you think of anything that would mean your BIL could not remain in the house for a few days - woodworm in the attic needing treatment? Leaking pipe? might be easier to stretch it, once he's warm and comfy, and has nice meals!
     
  3. Kingfisher1

    Kingfisher1 Registered User

    May 7, 2015
    54
    Kent
    What a fantastic idea LadyA!!! Yes, that could work because he wouldn't suspect anything unusual with that as the bungalow is really old (built in 1923) then once he's here in a lovely warm house with people to chat to and his own room and nice meals, as you say, I don't think he'd want to go back. Thank you so much!

    I have emailed social services, hopefully they will get back to me soon.
     
  4. Tin

    Tin Registered User

    May 18, 2014
    4,815
    UK
    Could you invite him to have a short holiday with you? Money and his not wanting to spend it, maybe you could tell him the stay with you will be completely free. Some time spent with you will give you a real chance to see if you can cope with it all.

    Have you registered the PoA with his bank, think you need to take over his finances now. you don't have to discuss these issues with him, probably best if you don't because you will never get him to agree with you, but you do have to pay those bills. If the council/agency have handed this debt over to a recovery agency, talk to them about it and arrange a monthly repayment plan.
     
  5. LadyA

    LadyA Registered User

    Oct 19, 2009
    13,540
    Ireland
    Tin is right. Register the POA as soon as you can, though I don't know how you do that. Might need a doctor's certificate of his condition. My late husband's GP, when I first spoke to him about my concerns about William, knowing how paranoid William already was, wrote to him and said he needed to come in for the "usual over 70s FREE health check". :-D While the doctor (slowly) checked his weight, eyesight, blood pressure etc, he was also doing a clever line in casual questions checking his cognitive function. And as part of the "checkup " did a mini mental test.
     
  6. Kingfisher1

    Kingfisher1 Registered User

    May 7, 2015
    54
    Kent
    Thank you both! Yes, the POA was registered some time back now so I could easily set up a direct debit to pay the fees, but the bank insist on sending him a statement every month and he scrutinises it and wants to know what every penny is for. If he sees that I have gone against his wishes and set up a direct debit for almost £1000 per month he's going to have a meltdown!
     
  7. canary

    canary Registered User

    Feb 25, 2014
    10,809
    Female
    South coast
    Is there any way that you can persuade the bank to send the statements to you instead? I know that they normally want to send them to the account holder, but it can sometimes be changed. When mum first went into her CH I asked them to do this and at first they refused, but I pointed out the problems of the statements either going to her CH, or to her empty property and they decided to send them to me. Try arranging to see the bank manager about this. The people on the desk dont always understand the issues.
     
  8. Tin

    Tin Registered User

    May 18, 2014
    4,815
    UK
    Like canary has done, a few people I know have done the same, making an appointment with bank manager and informing them of the stalemate. You have PoA so at the very least they will talk to you. You could suggest online statements Of course all of this would be a lot easier if he would move into your home, at least then you would be able to intercept the bank statements after change of address. Have the care agency said that they will cancel all visits if this outstanding amount is not paid? One other thing is to talk to Citizens Advice.
     
  9. Kingfisher1

    Kingfisher1 Registered User

    May 7, 2015
    54
    Kent
    Yes I've tried believe me, but they just say that unless he specifically requests that he doesn't want statements they have to send them.
     
  10. Pickles53

    Pickles53 Registered User

    Feb 25, 2014
    2,475
    Radcliffe on Trent
    #10 Pickles53, Nov 5, 2015
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2015
    Sounds like they really don't understand that if you have a registered POA it is your decision not his. The whole point is that an attorney is operating an account precisely because the account holder does not have capacity to make these decisions. I know it's potentially more hassle, but frankly if you see someone senior at the bank and they won't comply I would close the account and go elsewhere. (Threatening this may get their attention anyway.) I set up online banking for my mum's account and requested no paper statements to either her or me and there was no quibble at all.
     
  11. Pickles53

    Pickles53 Registered User

    Feb 25, 2014
    2,475
    Radcliffe on Trent
    Spot on canary especially the last sentence. Once I had registered POA with utility companies, BT, investment companies etc. there was no problem changing the address for all correspondence to my address. Point out that if important correspondence requiring a reply goes astray (my mum used to lose or hide letters, bills, and so on) you cannot properly fulfil your legal obligations as attorney.
     
  12. Reflection

    Reflection Registered User

    Feb 25, 2015
    10
    You could tell him the bank only send out statements by e-mail now.
     
  13. Kingfisher1

    Kingfisher1 Registered User

    May 7, 2015
    54
    Kent
    Thank you, I will try again but I'm not holding out much hope to be honest. I've had several meetings with the person responsible for managing such accounts - the head of a team specifically set up to deal with these matters - and she told me there is nothing that can be done unless he specifically requests no statements. This is Santander, the same bank that refused to give me a debit card don't forget.
     
  14. Pickles53

    Pickles53 Registered User

    Feb 25, 2014
    2,475
    Radcliffe on Trent
    I forgot that, but as Santander were by far the hardest bunch to deal with among my mum's various banks I'm not surprised. How about a formal complaint followed up (if no joy) by reference to someone like the Financial Ombudsman?

    http://www.financial-ombudsman.org.uk

    Or just take your dad's business elsewhere to a more helpful bank.
     
  15. Risa

    Risa Registered User

    Apr 13, 2015
    483
    Essex
    I don't know how easy it is to get POA removed but if your BiL is refusing to pay for a bill that he is legally responsible for and it has got the point that debt collectors are involved, then this seems to me to reinforce the fact that he isn't competent to manage his finances. Would he have the abilility to contact a solicitor to discuss revoking it or is it just bluster on his part?

    If you can't get the statements stopped, is having his mail re-directed to you by the Post Office an option?
     
  16. canary

    canary Registered User

    Feb 25, 2014
    10,809
    Female
    South coast
    You can do that if you have POA, but beware that the PO will send a letter to his address telling him that his mail is being re-directed.
     
  17. Tin

    Tin Registered User

    May 18, 2014
    4,815
    UK
    Have you tried Santander Uk complaints and resolutions 0800 171 2171 or go online.
     
  18. Pickles53

    Pickles53 Registered User

    Feb 25, 2014
    2,475
    Radcliffe on Trent
    Just had a thought that if debt collectors are involved then it is likely that fees and interest charges are adding to the debt so long as it remains unpaid. I don't want to add to your worries, but if you are the attorney, there could be an argument that failing to pay the bills is not in your BiL's best financial interests. An attorney has a primary obligation to protect the donor's financial position, even if this conflicts with their wishes.

    I can only imagine how hard it will be be to go against BIL, but I think you should consider this aspect of the situation, if you haven't already.
     
  19. LadyA

    LadyA Registered User

    Oct 19, 2009
    13,540
    Ireland
    I think you've had good advice - take it to their complaints dept, the financial ombudsman and change his bank. You do have the power. If the POA has been registered I don't think he actually can revoke it without a doctor certifying that he does have capacity to handle his financial affairs. Can you see that?
     
  20. Kingfisher1

    Kingfisher1 Registered User

    May 7, 2015
    54
    Kent
    I'm hoping I've finally got him to agree to come and stay here for a while. Between me, my son, and Harry's carer we managed to concoct a story about electrical work needing to be carried out which means Harry wouldn't be able to live there as his power was going to be off for quite a while (therefore no heating, hot water etc)

    Then he said he would wait until he received a letter from this company detailing the work involved before agreeing to leave, so I've now got to invent a fictitious firm and print off a letter and send it to him! Oh what a tangled web we weave.....

    Thing is, I honestly don't know where to start with him coming to live here. Yes, there is a spare bedroom ready and waiting, but how do I sort out his benefits, my benefits (I receive widowed parents allowance and child tax credit plus council tax rebate) his council tax on an unoccupied property, utilities, his social worker, GP, pensions, house insurance etc, etc, etc??? I just don't know where to begin and it is stressing me out! :(
     

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