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/ Power of Attorney expenses

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icnoble on 14 Apr 2018

This is a follow on from the thread below. You need to read the thread to understand the situation.

https://www.ukclimbing.com/forums/off_belay/petrol_expenses-667357#x8597456

The latest on my 2 aunts is that they have been in a nursing home in Ayr since December. I now have power of attorney for the “awkward” aunt Patricia. The household bills have been paid and she owes nothing. I have had 3 visits to York over the last 2 weeks to sort out the house and get it on the market, it has been unoccupied for since Feb 2016. The reason I have had 3 visits is because I was working around pre arranged work schedules. I stayed in York YHA for 3 nights for the first visit, a local b & b for 1 night and in the house for 2 nights as the heating was back on and was now habitable. I took the decision to eat out on these occasions, breakfast and dinner at the local Weatherspoons to save cost. So I don’t feel I am milking the situation.

I will also be claiming travel expenses at 30p/ mile. 

The end result of these relatively short visits is that the house is ready for sale. The photographer is coming on Monday. I employed the services of a gardener to sort out the “jungle”, a cleaner to help me with cleaning the house and a heating engineer and plumber. I did a lot of the work myself, again to save cost to my aunt.  I should only need one or 2 relatively short visits to the house to sort out the rest of the clearing of the contents. I will be turning down overtime in future visits but will not be claiming loss of income.

I am the only member of the family who is prepared to do this. There is a cousin but he is 75 and is not in the best of health, he has to be careful as he is liable to have a stroke. I have a brother and sister who are not willing to help in any way at all.

I have kept all receipts for meals out and accomadation, mileage is done on the shortest route from Kendal to York rather than the quickest. 

I dont expect any problems from my relatives but does anyone here think I am being unreasonable in the decisions I have made?

 

 

 

Eric9Points - on 14 Apr 2018
In reply to icnoble:

I think you're being perfectly reasonable.

I hope your aunts think so too.

Deadeye - on 14 Apr 2018
In reply to icnoble:

Hi

Sorry to hear this.

That sounds entirely reasonable (as long as dinner is sensible).

The office of the public guardian are quite good at helping with this type of query (if you can both get through and get the right person).

If your concern is defensibility in the eyes of the Public Guardian, you have little to concern you.

If it's more the perception of the rest of the family then the best bet is to let folk know before you go that you are doing things and the cost involved.

It's a horrible business and, sadly, gets worse if you are an executor.

 

marsbar - on 14 Apr 2018
In reply to icnoble:

It would be unreasonable of any of your family to complain as you are the only one who has got on with the things that need doing.  

If you left the house to go to ruin and the unpaid bills to continue etc then it would cost far more in the long term I expect.  

I don't see why you should be out of pocket as well as the only family member spending time on this.  That would be unfair.  

icnoble on 14 Apr 2018
In reply to Deadeye:

dinner and breakfast was Weatherspoons, so £14 for steak and chips and a couple of pints. 

 

 

Dax H - on 15 Apr 2018
In reply to marsbar:

> It would be unreasonable of any of your family to complain as you are the only one who has got on with the things that need doing.  

I speak from experience here, when it comes to families and the sniff of any money unfortunately unreasonable is where things often end up. 

Dax H - on 15 Apr 2018
In reply to icnoble:

Sounds to me like you are doing the best you can and certainly not milking the situation. If anyone complains just point out that they probably won't see any inheritance anyway as the nursing home fees will burn through it in no time. 

Pete Pozman - on 15 Apr 2018
In reply to icnoble:

Carry on keeping the receipts and documenting your actions as above . Don't claim for beer. 

cander - on 15 Apr 2018
In reply to Dax H:

As an aside if your awkward aunt has been diagnosed with dementia the NHS should meet the cost of care (she’s ill not just old) and not from her own financial resources.

Deadeye - on 15 Apr 2018
In reply to icnoble:

I'd probably leave the beers off if you're concerned about others' perceptions

abr1966 - on 15 Apr 2018
In reply to cander:

> As an aside if your awkward aunt has been diagnosed with dementia the NHS should meet the cost of care (she’s ill not just old) and not from her own financial resources.

Sadly this is far from the reality!

summo on 15 Apr 2018
In reply to icnoble:

All sounds fair. I would just round the figures down, so you have everything on your side. So if it was 278, claim 250. Keep all the receipts, forever!! 

Family, business and money rarely mix well without formal agreements. I bet when the cash is in the bank, and/or they pass on you can guarantee all those who can't be bothered to help now, will be demanding their share, saying how they were never asked to help, or you weren't forced etc.. 

So don't go heavily out of pocket now and do what is right in helping a family member. 

baron - on 15 Apr 2018
In reply to icnoble:

I presume your aunt 'donated' the power of attorney to you.

If so she obviously trusts you with her finances (do you have the medical power of attorney as well?).

Are you the only one with a power of attorney?

You shouldn't be out of pocket in any way if you are sorting out her affairs.

Imagine what a solicitor would be charging.

And as mentioned your expenses will be nothing compared to the cost of the nursing home.

Doug on 15 Apr 2018
In reply to cander:

unless something has changed in the last year, the NHS will make a contribution but if your aunt has savings (including value of her house) of more than about 27 000 GBP she will quickly go through her savings.  Once she goes below that threshold the state should cover all her costs - or at least that's what happened with my Dad - he died maybe 3 months after his savings fell below the limit so we saw how the system works. This assumes you are in England, the system is different in Scotland.

marsbar - on 15 Apr 2018
In reply to Dax H:

Totally agree with you.  That's why it's good that OP is getting an independent view here.   

marsbar - on 15 Apr 2018
In reply to Deadeye:

I'd agree with that.  

cander - on 15 Apr 2018
In reply to abr1966:

 

Its called NHS continuing healthcare funding. The NHS covers the full cost of healthcare - it is important to get an independent diagnosis of the healthcare need as opposed to the social care needs (which is what the NHS will try to fob you off with) as social care needs are not covered.

We took a solicitor to the meeting with the panel along with the independent diagnosis - my mother had significant healthcare needs, (pneumonia, impared mobility due to arthritis and vascular dementia).

It took us until after mums death to get the NHS to agree the bill was theirs - she was in a nursing home and needed 24/7 nursing care.

 

cander - on 15 Apr 2018
In reply to Doug:

Not if they have an ongoing medical condition requiring nursing care - but you have to fight for it, the NHS are notoriously slippery in this aspect of dementia care.

Doug on 15 Apr 2018
In reply to cander:

From memory, Dad had to pay nursing home fees (equivalent to rent & food) while (after a bit of a struggle with the bureaucracy) the HNS paid for the extra nursing care he required due to his Dementia (& later other health problems). As he had a reasonable pension (but not enough to cover his costs) he got no assistance for the  home fees. At the same time an aunt who had no savings & was in rented accommodation before needing to move into a nursing home had all her costs paid (but no real choice in where she went).

So yes, medical care is paid for, but far from all costs & many, like my Dad, end up using almost all their savings on care home fees.

 

Chris Harris - on 15 Apr 2018
In reply to Dax H:

> I speak from experience here, when it comes to families and the sniff of any money unfortunately unreasonable is where things often end up. 

Can't disagree. I'm currently dealing with a case where the mother is contesting her deceased husband's will in which she thinks her own children got too much & she didn't get enough. 

So she's pissing away tens of thousands of her kids' inheritance on legal fees in an attempt to get her hands on their inheritance. 

Charming. 

abr1966 - on 15 Apr 2018
In reply to cander:

Thanks.......going through the process at the moment as my other half has power of attorney for her dad. He's in a specialist dementia nursing home now but only about 20% of the residents qualify for continued healthcare funding.....

He's 'contributing' about £650 per week at the moment!

Clint86 - on 15 Apr 2018
In reply to abr1966:

How would I start to try and get an assessment for CHF? Through the doctor? Or is there a long complicated form available on the net. I've googled a bit but not found an easy answer.  

hokkyokusei - on 15 Apr 2018
In reply to icnoble:

To be honest it sounds to me as though you are being very reasonable.

Edit for spelling.

Post edited at 18:04
abr1966 - on 15 Apr 2018
In reply to Clint86:

Its the CCG who the assessment is reviewed by.....our application was facilitated by the Social Worker but required contributions from the care staff, GP and Mental Health Team. There is lots of threshold criteria as you'd expect.... 

icnoble on 15 Apr 2018
In reply to icnoble:

Regarding the nursing home fees, both aunts are in a home in scotland and the Scottish government pays £1000 a month to each aunt, I meant to say the english tax payer.

 

 

wintertree - on 15 Apr 2018
In reply to icnoble:

 

Sounds more than reasonable.  

As I am running short on annual leave allowance at work I would likely have had to take unpaid leave to do as you have.  I would have had no qualms charging my time at a comparable rate to my pay, and I will have no qualms about my juniors doing the same if I ever sign my finances over.  

Edit:  if I was single I would probably just suck up the cost, but I now have my own dependants to think about as well.

The various people employed to maintain the house will more than pay for themselves.   As executor I didn’t think twice about paying someone to cut lawns weekly until completion on a house I was selling.  

To digress... Quite aside from making it more likely to sell and more likely to sell for more money, you stopped the house from looking empty/abandoned which I like to think made it less of a theft risk. Around my way a certain type will rifle through an empty house smashing walls up and sawing through joists galore for the copper in the wiring and plumbing.  That’s the main reason I overcame my aversion to plastic plumbing whilst slowly renovating a house left empty for long periods...

Post edited at 20:30
Deadeye - on 15 Apr 2018
In reply to cander:

> As an aside if your awkward aunt has been diagnosed with dementia the NHS should meet the cost of care (she’s ill not just old) and not from her own financial resources.


Completely wrong.

NHS funded continuing healthcare is an extremely complex area.  A diagnosis of dementia is not a sufficient argument to qualify.

There has to be a primary *healthcare* need.  Dementia does not create this - most of the challenges are behavioural.  Capability and need across many domains is assessed - at the very severe end of the spectrum people do not qualify because the essential need is for care, not health support.

When I'm old and need care I expect to pay for it.  An inheritance for the next generation is not a right.

 

icnoble on 15 Apr 2018
In reply to Deadeye:

Agreed, inheritance is not a right. My wife and I don't have children to help with our old age care if needed. We have always lived well within our means and are in a very good financial position to pay for any care needs we may need in the future. We could have spent the lot on  luxury holidays and expensive meals but neither want to be dependent on the state. If we don't need any old age care our nieces and nephews share our inheritance. 


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