When a person has a diagnosis of dementia, there may come a time when they are unable to make decisions about their care and their finances. This happens when someone is found to no longer have the capacity to make these decisions. Undoubtedly, this is a difficult period for all involved and planning what might happen should this occur may make it easier.
There are three main ways that you can agree to have someone manage your affairs.
Becoming an agent or appointee
An appointee is someone known and trusted that can be nominated to act on someone’s behalf when dealing with the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP). It can be a relative, a friend, a representative from an organisation or the organisation itself. Appointees can sign benefit claim forms, inform the DWP about a change of circumstance for the claimant and spend the benefit in the claimant's best interests. Click here for more information.
Lasting Power of Attorney
A lasting power of attorney (LPA) is a legal document appointing one, or more, trusted people to be a person’s attorney(s). An attorney is a person responsible for making decisions on their behalf. There are two types of LPA
Health and welfare, to make decisions regarding medical care, future care needs and life-sustaining treatment. It can only be used once the person can no longer make their own decisions.
Property and financial affairs, which appoints an attorney to make decisions regarding managing a bank or building society account, paying bills, collecting benefits or a pension, or buying and selling a house. This can be used immediately if the person making it gives their permission.
The Court of Protection
The Court of Protection resides in London and can make decisions on financial or welfare matters for people who can’t make decisions at the time they need to be made. It can appoint two or more deputies and state whether they should act together, or together and independently. They are appointed to make decisions about the person’s personal welfare and/or property and financial affairs if there is no attorney to make decisions for them. Click here for more information.