Here is the reply I have received from Jennifer Kennedy at the Advice line:
Thank you for your email to Carers UK.
If a resident's circumstances change, for example, her/his income or capital increases or decreases, s/he should inform the local authority, so that her/his fees can be reassessed accordingly. If a resident does not inform the local authority and pays fees which are too low, the local authority may take steps to recover the money owing.
You should therefore inform the relevant local authority as soon as your daughter receives this money.
You mention that you are aware of the rules regarding trust funds, however just for reference, section 10 of CRAG outlines how trust funds are treated: http://www.dh.gov.uk/dr_consum_dh/group ... 125836.pdf
I would recommend that you contact a solicitor if you have any questions regarding trust funds.
You did not mention benefits in your email, however if your daughter is receiving any means-tested benefits, there are certain capital limits that must be taken into consideration. If you have over £16,000 you are not entitled to benefit. The first £6,000 is ignored and does not affect your weekly benefit at all. If you have between £6,000.01 and £16,000 you may be entitled to benefit but some income from your capital is assumed. This is ‘tariff income’, which is assumed to be £1 for every £250, or part of £250, of your capital within those limits. The lower limit is £10,000 is you live in a care home.
It’s your responsibility to tell the relevant office if your circumstances change or you may end up being overpaid, which may then be recoverable.
For more information regarding benefit overpayments please see the following link]https://www.gov.uk/benefit-overpayments
You should therefore contact the relevant benefit offices (depending on what means-tested benefits your daughter is currently receiving) and inform them as soon as this money is received.
I hope this has answered your queries.
If you do have any questions, or feel I can advise you further, then please don’t hesitate to get back in touch.
Advice and Information Officer
Advice & Information Team
My reply to Jennifer was:
Thank you very much for your reply. I think I do need to find a solicitor who specialises in this area. I assume from your reply that if I fail to report the change in circumstances then I would be possibly liable to a charge of benefit fraud.
Part of the problem is the local authority concerned do not wish to discuss this matter in advance of the legacy being received, so effectively no planning can take place! And they will not provide any policies or procedures or even explain how they define terms, principally, i suspect, because they do not have any written information.
Again my thanks, no solution but a better understanding!