Power of Attorney

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cypruslass | 17:27 Mon 17th Oct 2011 | Law
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Power of attorney question. My father is in a care home but at times he does not even recognise me. He has monies in a post office account but i cannot access these for the care home as there is no power of attorney in place. I have been told until there is then there is nothing i can do. How can i obtain this power of attorney now that he is non compus mentos please? The solicitor has said he cannot compose the power of attorney without a doctors letter which i am having problems trying to obtain. Any help on where i go next with this please? Thankyou


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PoA only applies when mental capacity has been lost. You need the medical evidence that your farther has lost capacity. This generally isn't a huge problem unless capacity is still present.
Even by your own admission, your father lacks the mental capacity to make a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA). If you believe that there is a slight chance of his doctor deciding that he has the mental capacity – you could arrange for a visit to have the doctor assess your father for this specific purpose.

It is likely that his doctor will charge for this service.

If your father cannot make an LPA, then the Court Funds Office will take control of his finances and make the necessary payments for health care etc. They will also take a large slice of the money for administering the fund.

This is why everyone approaching old age should have an LPA, to stop the money grabbing government taking even more of their hard earned cash, than they otherwise would.

The above may help. You can be appointed a deputy but there will be fees to pay.
Unfortunately, Hymie, if the person cannot look after his own affairs, it is not quite as simply as the CFO taking control.

The OP or someone close to the person will need to make an application to the Court of Protection for the appointment of a deputy. Generally this takes several months unless there is an "urgency" - ie non payment of care fees, sale of a property etc in which case they can be fast tracked. I think the fees are £400 for an application and £150 by the deputy.

This is a prime example of why everyone should make an LPA.
In the meantime you should contact the Pension Service on 08456 060 265 ( assuming he is getting State Pension) and tell them the situation. They would normally arrange for a visit to confirm that someone is not able to manage their own affairs and also that the person wanting to act on their behalf is a suitable person. If they are able to confrim this you would then be appointed to act on behalf of yir father (you'd then be called his Appointee.) You can act only in respect of benefit matters but at least you could start getting all his state benefits paid to you..
If he can still sign his name and the Post Office account you refer to is the card account used only for pensions, etc, then it shouldn't be too difficult to get yourself appointed as his agent and your own card to draw money. You can get the form at a Post Office - it's called Permanent Agent I think You fill it in, he signs it, you take it to the PO and a week/10 days later pick up the card. You need ID for yourself (but there's ways round that)

This should at least keep you going
I had to do exactly this, and I had to get powers of Deputy in the Court of protection.
I warn you - you have to do this, and it may take up to 2 years. If you don't do it, the Court of Protection may step in and appoint a solicitor, who will have to pay himself/herself out of your father's funds. Search "Court of Protection" on the Internet and follow all instructions, print off all forms, send them off and wait. There will have to be forms from doctors, consultants, psycho-geriatricians, and Uncle-Tom-Cobbley-and-all. maybe also Social workers, nurses, Home manager . If all else fails, go to the Citizens Advice.
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