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Power of Attorney

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  • Power of Attorney

    My brother was granted Power of Attorney( eight years ago) in respect of my Mother, whom died last October 2014 (Intestate)

    One week after her death and before she was buried I received a letter from my mother's solicitors informing me that the Court of Protection had instructed them to deal with her estate of 40,000 and I was entitled to one fifth (Five siblings).

    It is now going on for seven months and still no progress, I visited these solicitors three months ago, and asked what my position was, to be told that my mother may or may not have had overpayments of Pension Credit, this was the cause of the delay.

    She was in a care home for eight years funded by the sale of her house, so any D.H.S.S payments would have been paid to the local authority (I personally don't think she was in receipt of Pension Credit) ? subsequently after a figure of her estate was given in November 2014, I discovered that some shares of hers were sold two days before Christmas 2014 valued at 700, no mention of this was given to me at the visit to these solicitors.

    I have written some weeks ago to the D.H.S.S regarding the Pension Credit, and they can't even be bothered to acknowledge my enquiry, let alone address it, I have also written to the Court of Protection, again no response. My brother will not give me any information, and has cut himself off from the family.

    My questions are: - (1) Why would Power of Attorney granted to my brother be passed onto the Court of Protection?

    (2) Whom is my deceased Mother been protected from?

    (3) Can shares be sold without the benefactors knowledge or permission to do so?

    (4) How can an assessment be made on her estate before she was buried?

    Thanking anyone whom can throw some light on this!
    Last edited by orangecat; 2nd May 2015, 14:56:PM.
    Tags: None

  • #2
    Re: Power of Attorney

    1)When the donor dies the attorney has no longer any power to act for the donor.
    On the death of a donor of an LPA or EPA the Office of the Public Guardian has to be notified and the instrument returned for cancellation.
    2) You refer to your "mother's solicitor". I suspect this is a solicitor appointed by the Official Solicitor who will act as last resort personal representative for the estate of a deceased person.
    3) The administrator has to collect in and realize the assets. He does not have to consult with the beneficiaries, and he certainly doesn't need their permission.
    4)An administrator (especially one who is not emotionally involved) will work quickly to secure the assets of the estate.

    Regarding the involvement of the DWP (DHSS) you are not certain whether or not she was in receipt of PC.
    If DWP are investigating the possibility of an overpayment it is more than likely she was at sometime in receipt of benefits.
    The DWP investigation often takes between 6 and 12 months.


    • #3
      Re: Power of Attorney

      Agree with Des.

      The fact that somebody's affairs are being overseen by the Court of Protection does not carry with it an implication that they need to be protected from somebody. It is a jurisdiction which looks after the affairs of those who are mentally incapacitated.


      • #4
        Re: Power of Attorney

        Thanks Des8 for your prompt reply and for your information.

        I appears that the person whom has been granted Power of Attorney has full control of the deceased's assets, along with the Court of Protection, the D.H.S.S and the solicitors dealing with my mother's affairs, and they do not have to disclose any information relevant to their duties Had my mother made a will, I am sure she would have wanted her five children equal shares of her assets. It now appears that there is no time limit or expenses incurred, or information requested in resolving what my position is, when you can't get an acknowledgement from the Court of Protection or D.H.S.S, let alone expect them to address the issues, in which case I feel that I can say cheerio to my legal entitlement to a fifth share of my Mother's assets.

        It amounts to nothing short of legalised theft ?


        • #5
          Re: Power of Attorney

          The person who was granted PoA when your mother was alive should now have no control over your late mother's assets.

          The DWP do what they have to do by law. Generally they are accurate if sometimes insensitive. It can be worthwhile checking their calculations as mistakes can occur. Other than recovering any overpayments they will make no charge against the estate. As you are not your late mother's representative it is probable the DWP will not communicate with you, possibly claiming they can only discuss your late mother's affairs with the court appointed representative.

          The solicitors appointed will have to render an account of their expenses, and if you think they are unreasonable you can challenge them.
          Whilst they are carrying out their duties, every query you raise, and every time they advise you of progress they will charge and the charge will reduce the total value of the estate.

          At least having the estate settled by an independent solicitor should greatly reduce the chances of disagreements with your siblings.
          You'd be surprised at the number of times we hear about fallings out in a family over the distribution of a late relative's estate, caused by disagreements and accusations of wrong doing.

          I can't agree it is legalised theft, although the solicitor's charges might seem high.


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