How to manage money of an older person you care for

Depending on the kinds of difficulties someone’s having with their finances, the help you could provide might involve anything from helping them with bills and paperwork and assisting with their day-to-day money, through to taking on a lasting power of attorney

Providing informal support

When you’re helping support someone with long-term-care needs, you should try to ensure that they’re making the best use of their money to meet those needs

This might mean helping them with their care plan, making sure they have money to spend on the hobbies and activities they enjoy, and that any allocated care budget is used wisely

Help someone informally with day-to-day money

If you find yourself managing a personal care budget that has been awarded by a local authority or care trust, then it comes with certain responsibilities and obligations that you must fulfil

Direct payments explained

What if someone needs more support?

Arranging to formally manage a friend or family member’s money for them is a big step for both of you. For them it means giving up financial control and entrusting someone else with their money. For you it means taking on responsibility for someone else’s financial future. So it isn’t something to be entered into lightly

The law says you must assume someone is able to make their own decisions unless there’s evidence to the contrary

If the person you’re caring for ‘lacks mental capacity’, you can apply to the Office of the Public Guardian for what’s called ‘power of attorney’ to formally handle their financial affairs. This would allow you to deal with, for example, the bank and care providers on their behalf

Bearing all this in mind, it’s a good idea to think about mental capacity now and work out what you might need to do in the future

When does someone need formal help with managing their money

Preparing for the future

Don’t put off setting up a power of attorney – it’s much easier to do when the person can still make their own decisions

Before setting up a lasting power of attorney you need to know what’s involved – the different types, how much it costs and how long it will take

Setting up a power of attorney




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