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Advice please! - Carers UK Forum

Advice please!

Share information, support and advice on all aspects of caring.
Hi, I am posting this on behalf of my friend Dave who has looked after his elderly and mentally ill mother as her full time carer for the past 10 years, as he has no internet access. He has a brother and sister who pretty much ran away from the situation when it arose and left him to give up his job to become her carer 10 years ago. Despite his sister providing odd lifts to shops for him, he is on his own and has never been offered so much as a day's relief by either of them.

Currently the house Dave and his mum live in is in her name, his mum 's condition has recently deteriorated to the point where she has had to be sectioned as she would not take her medication. To put it bluntly, his mum may not have too much time left. Neither I nor Dave have any idea of where he stands regarding what should happen to the house should she pass away, or what to do about the fact that she has not made a will. (In her current condition I don't think she is capable of making one, she has unfortunately become very paranoid and anti-Dave in many ways)

Can anyone either advise us as to where to seek help regarding what to do about this or provide advice about whether Dave needs to try and get the house put in his name (which due to his mum's current state may be quite difficult), or whether his brother and sister need to be involved. Dave is very easily manipulated and I am very concerned that his brother and sister would not hesitate to try and gain whatever they could from a worst case scenario arising, and frankly, they deserve nothing.

Any help would be very gratefully received, thank you.
Hi, I am posting this on behalf of my friend Dave who has looked after his elderly and mentally ill mother as her full time carer for the past 10 years,
Any help would be very gratefully received, thank you.
Hi Friendofcarer,
My advice to Dave would be to consult a good family lawyer right away. You don't say whether the house is a tenancy, or a freehold, and if there is a mortgage. All these situations will affect matters. Daves mum would need to have her faculties to sign any documents. However, if the medication works, she may be able to express a view, and this needs to be approved by a doctor and properly witnessed and recorded.

Dave has been caught in a very common trap, where the carer has virtually no legal rights and the other relatives can come back into the picture at any point. It's a situation that can cause great expense and worry.

The shame is that early in the process, all carers should insist on having a Power of Attorney and Will in place - without these a carer has virtually no legal rights at all.
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all carers should insist on having a Power of Attorney and Will in place - without these a carer has virtually no legal rights at all.
Thanks for your swift reply, regarding the above quote, do you know if it is possible to obtain these powers at this late stage?

Dave and his mum rely entirely on benefits to survive, they have no savings or other income so anything that costs is going to be a big problem.

Thanks again for your help
Hi, Frienofcarer.

Any form of power of attorney can only be set up when the person - in this case mum - has mental capacity to make the decision, and it seems that this is not the case here.

The issue seems to be more about what happens to the house and from what you've said it seems the likelihood is that mum owns the house. If that's the case, then the situation is difficult but not impossible.

Firstly, the family cannot make your friend homeless in order to sell the house: there is a specific law about this that I heard of in a case a year or so ago but I don't have the details I'm afraid - as Excalibur says, get legal advice pronto! And yes, it's important to do it now as often family members will move quickly once the situation changes.

It may also be worth contacting the CarersLine - see the sticky on this board for details.
Thanks very much again for the help, I have passed this on to Dave and he is very grateful too.