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Dementia / Power of attorney

After a bad fall last year my Mother has been diagnosed with Dementia & unable to make complex decisions. Unfortunately although I was dealing with her financial obligations (paying bills, shopping etc) it never occurred to me to apply for Power of Attorney & now it seems it's too late. Her local authority have advised applying for Deputyship, I've had a quick look on the web where the advice from one site is to avoid deputyship as it is very expensive. Does anybody have any advice on this & are there any other options ? Any help/ advice at a very sad & worrying time will be greatly appreciated. 
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Comments

  • Why are you too late?

    What's the difference in POA and Deputyship?

    Sorry for the questions when you're looking for answers.
  • Sorry to hear this Bob... I just checked with my Wife as her Dad has gone down hill with dementia and found it impossible to get PoA themselves.

    Unfortunately doesnt help you out in any way with your situation but all the best coping with what is a very sad, difficult time like you say
  • edited January 14
    Fortunately my wife got Power of attorney for her father early as he was not good at managing his money before dementia started to set in and he was grateful for it. It made life a lot easier for us and him.

    Having dementia doesn't mean a person can't wish for somebody else to manage their affairs. Has your mum definitely gone beyond this point~?


  • edited January 14
    I recall we had to get my father in law's neighbour to act as a referee/supporter for the application. It was straightforward beyond that although it took a while to come through. 

    It definitely enabled my wife to act in his best interests, not just financially but she was involved in other important decisions too.
  • Fortunately my wife got Power of attorney for her father early as he was not good at managing his money before dementia started to set in and he was grateful for it. It made life a lot easier for us and him.

    Having dementia doesn't mean a person can't wish for somebody else to manage their affairs. Has your mum definitely gone beyond this point~?


    I was talking to Social Services today regarding Deprivation of Liberty & they advised that a Doctor had examined my mum & came to the conclusion that she was unable to make complex decisions. I know for certain that if I asked her if she wanted me to take control of her money she would say yes. If somebody else asked different questions they may well come to the conclusion that she was unable to make her own decisions.
    She is hard of hearing & doesn't always understand what is being said or sometimes acts up & pretends that she doesn't hear. 
  • Follow @Chizz's advice above.

    I got financial LPA to act on my father's behalf when, in reality, he already was very, very far gone in terms of dementia. My mother got health LPA at the same time.

    The family doctor who knew my dad's case, and my family etc, certified that he was of sound mind at the time...

    Good luck, LPA is definitely the way to go if you can get it sorted. 
  • iaitch said:
    Why are you too late?

    What's the difference in POA and Deputyship?

    Sorry for the questions when you're looking for answers.
    No worries.

    Too late because she (according to a doctor) is unable to make complex decisions for herself

    Here's a link, I've just skimmed through but I think all details are there. From what I understand (from a different website) I actually have to pay each year to manage my mums money !

    https://www.hughjames.com/blog/powers-of-attorney-and-deputyships-what-is-the-difference#:~:text=Differences between power of attorney,once an individual lacks capacity.
  • Sorry to hear this Bob... I just checked with my Wife as her Dad has gone down hill with dementia and found it impossible to get PoA themselves.

    Unfortunately doesnt help you out in any way with your situation but all the best coping with what is a very sad, difficult time like you say
    Thanks FA appreciated
  • edited January 14
    Fortunately my wife got Power of attorney for her father early as he was not good at managing his money before dementia started to set in and he was grateful for it. It made life a lot easier for us and him.

    Having dementia doesn't mean a person can't wish for somebody else to manage their affairs. Has your mum definitely gone beyond this point~?


    I was talking to Social Services today regarding Deprivation of Liberty & they advised that a Doctor had examined my mum & came to the conclusion that she was unable to make complex decisions. I know for certain that if I asked her if she wanted me to take control of her money she would say yes. If somebody else asked different questions they may well come to the conclusion that she was unable to make her own decisions.
    She is hard of hearing & doesn't always understand what is being said or sometimes acts up & pretends that she doesn't hear. 
    I would argue that wanting a trusted family member to look after things they can no longer do is not that complicated. I understand the issue that there has to be checks but is it worth talking to the Alzheimer society? They also have a forum 'Dementia Talking Point' where you can ask questions and get answers from people who have been through it or are going through it. I know we found it helpful for my father in law a few times.

    https://www.alzheimers.org.uk/get-support/dementia-talking-point-our-online-community
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  • iaitch said:
    Why are you too late?

    What's the difference in POA and Deputyship?

    Sorry for the questions when you're looking for answers.
    No worries.

    Too late because she (according to a doctor) is unable to make complex decisions for herself

    Here's a link, I've just skimmed through but I think all details are there. From what I understand (from a different website) I actually have to pay each year to manage my mums money !

    https://www.hughjames.com/blog/powers-of-attorney-and-deputyships-what-is-the-difference#:~:text=Differences between power of attorney,once an individual lacks capacity.
    Can I ask if you went to a doctor that knows both your mum, and you? 

    When I say that my dad was incapable of understanding the decision, he was completely non verbal at the time LPA was granted... 
  • Ask Citizens advice. They will know if the best way forward
  • Chizz said:
    Hello Charlton Bob.  I cannot give advice on what your mother should do.  But I would highly recommend you have a look at this https://www.ageuk.org.uk/information-advice/money-legal/legal-issues/power-of-attorney/ especially the section that demonstrates the difference between Power of Attorney and Lasting Power of Attorney.  

    If your Mum has mental capacity ('the ability to make or communicate specific decisions at the time they need to be made') then the LPA would seem to be the best course of action.  That would give you the authority and ability to take over your Mum's affairs at the time when her mental capacity diminishes, hopefully some time in the distant future.  It's basically a document saying 'If I lose mental capacity, I want Charlton Bob to take over my affairs.  But not yet'. 

    Note that there is an LPA for 'property and financial affairs' and an LPA for 'health and welfare'.  The former gives you authority to look after your Mum's money, property, investments, bills, etc. and the latter allows you to look after her specific aspirations with regards to her preference in terms of her health treatments.  They're £82 each.  

    If your Mum is considered to have mental capacity right now, then it would make a lot of sense (and avoid a lot of complicated issues) if she named you as an attorney.  

    You would need to register with the Office of the Public Guardian (details here https://www.gov.uk/power-of-attorney/make-lasting-power).  And you would need to get someone (can't remember whether you need one or two) to witness your Mum's signature.  (You can't witness it if you're the attorney).  

    The key to it is to get a 'certificate provider' to confirm she's making the LPA by choice and she understands what it all means.  If there's someone who knows your Mum well and can verify this, then, in my experience it's the most enormous imaginable weight lifted off your shoulders. 

    Good luck - I hope it works out for your Mum. 
    Thanks Chizz, she has been declared as being unable to make complex decisions but I know 100% if I asked her if she wanted me to act for her she would say yes. She's said in the past do you want me sign a piece of paper to say you deal with my money. Stupidly I thought well it won't be witnessed so no point. Maybe I should have said yes. She's currently in a care home which would make it difficult for witnesses unless I can get the care home manager to witness it for me but anyway this seems a good place to start so many thanks for that & your good wishes.
    Care Home staff management would be VERY good people to act as witnesses. 
  • My old man must just have a dreary outlook as he got me, my sister and his own partner/missus LPA’s over him last year and there’s not a lot wrong with him mentally (aside from he always thinks he took me to my first match at The Valley when unfortunately it was Shithurst park) and now he’s relying on me to not lose half a dozen boring envelopes that some solicitor has sent me...
  • edited January 14
    I wish I could remember, it was quite a few years ago, but I don't recall using a doctor. We got the forms and my father in law's friend and neighbour agreed to help.  I think it has to be somebody who has known the person for over two years and not a family member.

    We all completed the forms together in my father in law's nursing home. the friend completed his ones making a statement of how he knew my father in law and how he was capable of making the decision and Power of Attorney was granted. What I don't recall is whether we needed the support of a doctor but I don't think so. 

    Without it a deputy has to be appointed to perform this function and this can cost a lot of money as they don't do it for free. Most importantly, nobody could care about my father in law's welfare more than his daughter and it took a worry away from him whilst he was still able to worry about it. We visited him often and my wife was able to address his needs without the worry that he may be exploited. Does your mum have a friend of more than two years who can help?
  • Fumbluff said:
    My old man must just have a dreary outlook as he got me, my sister and his own partner/missus LPA’s over him last year and there’s not a lot wrong with him mentally (aside from he always thinks he took me to my first match at The Valley when unfortunately it was Shithurst park) and now he’s relying on me to not lose half a dozen boring envelopes that some solicitor has sent me...
    Your father is a very wise man. LPA is one of the things filed under "I know and think nothing about it, until it becomes everything I need to know."
  • I did LPA's for both mum & mum in law.
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  • edited January 14
    Whilst it is true everybody should do them and it is a useful message for all. CharltonBob's issue is that he doesn't think he can do it at this stage and it may still be a possibility for him. He states that is mum is still able to express a desire that he takes this over. That is an important decision, but I would argue not a complicated one. Of course it can be if there are family members contesting it etc... But if it is straightforward and her wish, it might not be too late. 
  • Huskaris said:
    Everyone should really do these forms as it saves an awful lot of bother should anything happen. I did the LPA for both health and welfare for my mother and got her friend to witness it.


    Exactly, my mum has demanded that me and my brother do the same with LPA for her, having seen what happened to my dad.

    We are forcing her into a home next week ;)
    I think everyone should do them as a matter of course once they hit 60 so that they're in place to cover all eventualities. If you don't have an LPA it can make life a nightmare.


  • Whilst it is true everybody should do them and it is a useful message for all. CharltonBob's issue is that he doesn't think he can do it at this stage and it may still be a possibility for him. He states that is mum is still able to express a desire that he takes this over. That is an important decision, but I would argue not a complicated one. Of course it can be if there are family members contesting it etc... But if it is straightforward and her wish, it might not be too late. 
    You're absolutely right. I think different doctors might very well have a different view of what the threshold for "ability to make decisions" is. 
  • Fortunately my wife got Power of attorney for her father early as he was not good at managing his money before dementia started to set in and he was grateful for it. It made life a lot easier for us and him.

    Having dementia doesn't mean a person can't wish for somebody else to manage their affairs. Has your mum definitely gone beyond this point~?


    I was talking to Social Services today regarding Deprivation of Liberty & they advised that a Doctor had examined my mum & came to the conclusion that she was unable to make complex decisions. I know for certain that if I asked her if she wanted me to take control of her money she would say yes. If somebody else asked different questions they may well come to the conclusion that she was unable to make her own decisions.
    She is hard of hearing & doesn't always understand what is being said or sometimes acts up & pretends that she doesn't hear. 
    I would argue that wanting a trusted family member to look after things they can no longer do is not that complicated. I understand the issue that there has to be checks but is it worth talking to the Alzheimer society? They also have a forum 'Dementia Talking Point' where you can ask questions and get answers from people who have been through it or are going through it. I know we found it helpful for my father in law a few times.

    https://www.alzheimers.org.uk/get-support/dementia-talking-point-our-online-community
    Thanks for that Muttley
  • edited January 14
    My brother was diagnosed with early on-set dementia aged 58, and I daresay a lot of you would recognise him from going to Charlton home and away since the Eighties. I can't properly advise because my missus did all the back and forth with the paperwork, but we do have power of attorney, which he gave permission to and is happy with, and thank God, because he was getting stitched up left, right and centre. We've saved him thousands all told.
  • Hi Bob,

    My 95 year old Mum suffered all sorts of problems during the last couple of years of her life and I realised I had to act and get POA on both her medical & financial situation. I did it all on line without any hassle at all. Although dementia had kicked in and she was in a care home she understood enough to realise what I was suggesting and that she would have to sign.

    I completed both the applications on line, printed off the docs and then got her to sign them with the care home manager as the witness. It was very straightforward and the main problem was the 8-10 weeks it takes for the docs to be approved.

    If your mum is aware of what you are doing and knows she has to sign you should be in the same position as I was.
    Thanks Mike, that's good to know. did you do this online through a solicitor or are the forms freely available for anyone ?
  • edited January 14
    I have spoken to my wife and she is pretty sure his doctor was not involved. Although they would have supported it. The friend was key and it was a process that may father in law, my wife and his friend did together. We sat down with the friend and explained things first. I was present and there was no issue in terms of him not wanting it, although what the form was saying had to be explained carefully to ensure he understood. We made it clear to his friend we wanted him to be honest and there was no pressure for him to support if he didn't feel able to. My father in law didn't want somebody he didn't know managing his financial affairs and the prospect of paying them to do so really annoyed him.

    Get the forms if you haven't done so already and look through them.
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