Lodders’ recent Care & Capacity webinar provides a great deal of useful information for those caring for elderly or vulnerable loved ones, as well as those who work and specialise in the care sector.
Dr Tarun Kuruvilla, a consultant in old age psychiatry, began the session by discussing how dementia presents in individuals, which types of dementia affect which parts of the brain, and how to improve quality of life for people diagnosed with dementia.
This was followed by Sue Quinn from Grace Care Consulting, who outlined how to identify care needs for an elderly or vulnerable relative or family friend, and the pros and cons of various care options. She also provided insight into how to deal with local authorities. She explained that knowing the care options available to you mean you can make an informed decision should a crisis occur.
Our final speaker was Sofia Tayton, partner in Lodders Care & Capacity team, who discussed the court of protection, powers of attorney, and what happens if things go wrong in these processes.
The session rounded off with an informative Q&A session.
Dr Kuruvilla talked through concerning memory problems and getting assessed for dementia, and how this works with current Covid-19 restrictions. He also discussed how to dispel stigma and fear around memory issues.
Sofia Tayton explained the reduced fees on LPA applications for people on low incomes, and the operation of these documents.
Sue Quinn considered the support which can be put in place by local authorities and services, and how to approach relatives who are struggling but do not want to admit it.
You can watch the webinar in full below. It runs for just over an hour and includes the insightful Q&A session at the end.
Elderly and vulnerable care: extended Q&A
As we did not get a chance to answer all of the questions during the session, we have asked our Care & Capacity experts some of your remaining questions below.
If there are multiple attorneys and one of them becomes bankrupt, does it invalidate the power of the other attorneys?
If the attorneys are appointed on a ‘joint and several’ basis, then only the bankrupt attorney loses their authority. If, however, the attorneys are appointed ‘jointly’ then none of them will be able to act. The LPA may name replacement attorneys, and in that case, it would be the replacement attorneys who are able to act for the donor going forward.
I have LPA forms from 2016, are they up to date?
The fact that the forms were completed in 2016 doesn’t mean they are automatically out of date, but if your situation has changed then you may want to consider making new ones. The best thing to do is look through them, and give some thought to the attorneys you have named and whether they are still the right people for the role – and, of course, that they are still willing to act for you should the need arise. If you want to add to the documents, or include guidance or instructions, then, unfortunately, you can’t amend the existing forms, you have to make entirely new ones. If a solicitor drew the forms up for you they should be happy to help you review them.
How much does a capacity assessment/the process cost?
This varies depending on who is carrying out the capacity assessment and the purpose for which it is needed. Some GPs are able to provide a brief letter regarding capacity for £120, in other cases an independent social worker may need to be involved, and that could cost £450. If detailed assessments are required or the matter may end up in court, then we would ask someone like Dr Kuruvilla to quote for work before arranging any meetings.
Can one person have an LPA for both financial and welfare affairs?
Yes, it is possible for you to have both sorts of LPA in place. I have found over the years that the financial LPA is the one that clients tend to think about first, but there has been a steady increase in people making welfare LPAs too. It all depends on your circumstances, but you can absolutely have both types of LPA in place. You can appoint the same people as your attorneys in each document, or have different people to make decisions about your care and your money.
Do you have any questions for our Care & Capacity experts?
Our specialist team is made up of experts in helping clients and their carers to manage the legal issues that affect them. We also understand that planning for the future means preparing for the unexpected.
If you have any questions for our Care & Capacity experts, please feel free to get in touch with Louise Igoe, available on 01789 206156 or via email, and Sofie Tayton, available on 01789 206151 or via email, who will be more than happy to have an initial chat with no obligations.
Sue Quinn heads up the Care Advice team at Grace Care Consulting, the UK’s leading private Independent Care Adviser. You can find out more about Grace Care Consulting, and the work that they do, here.
Dr Tarun Kuruvilla is a consultant in old age psychiatry and works at the Gloucestershire Health & Care NHS Foundation Trust.
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