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Hazzoura22

DWP/bank statements. savings all unused DLA, self neglect, vulnerable adult

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Hi, I’m hoping for some advice for my uncle.

 

He is 71, has had schizophrenia all his life, used to live with his parents till they passed away 15 years ago and now lives alone.

My mum (his sister) and my dad visit him weekly to check on him, take him some food and do a little clean for him.

 

He receives DLA (lowest rate) and pension credit and has rent paid on a small run down flat.

He is usually very private about his finances

 

last time they visited he was very anxious and told them he received a letter from the DWP to ask for bank statements to prove his amount in savings.

They asked to see the letter but he said he had thrown it away. When they asked him how much he has, it turns out he has nearly £25,000.

 

Obviously this is way more than he is allowed and we would like to know what is likely to happen now, and what is the best thing to do next?

 

The money has not come from any outside source, purely from his entitled benefits mounting up over the years resulting from him living very and neglecting himself and his home due to his mental illness and medication.

 

For example; he doesn’t eat well, only one decent meal a day and my parents take him fruit and veg and meals when they can.

He was going out in winter in a thin summer coat so they bought him a warm winter one.

His couches and bed are over 20 years old and falling apart and he refuses to buy a new ones saying they’re fine!

 

he only has this much in savings because he hasn’t had the mental capacity to use his entitlement to care for himself properly all these years.

He doesn’t smoke, drink or buy any new clothes or possessions for himself.

 

We are wondering whether to try to convince him to spend a chunk of the money on things he does actually need and keep receipts before sending the bank statements in, or if this is likely to get him into more trouble with the DWP?

 

He talks about being anxious about funeral costs so we could help him get a prepaid funeral plan.

He also needs a new mattress, bedding, 3 piece suite, TV, white goods for the kitchen, new clothes and shoes etc all of which he has neglected to buy for himself for 15 years.

 

Thank you very much for your advice!

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https://www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk/en/articles/benefits-you-can-claim-when-you-have-care-needs

 

Savings don't affect DLA according to this link above.

 

Sounds like someone needs to obtain a power of attorney for your Uncle to help him with all of this. If he is unable to cope with looking after himself including finances. The various charities that assist people with disabilities e.g Mind, Scope, can probably help with this and possibly his local council. Many local councils have staff that help vulnerable people with access to benefits and issues.

 

To get hold of Bank Statements, he would need to contact his Bank to make such a request.

 

If you phone one of the many charities that deal with disabilities and benefits, they will explain what you need to do and think about.

 

In regard to that DWP letter, it is important that they are contacted before any deadline date advised in their letter. Even if it is just to explain the situation and ask for more time.


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Pension credits are affected by savings, but if the savings are proved to be purely from DLA saved up, I would suggest this is proved by Bank Statements and question raised about whether the savings should reduce pension credits.

 

https://www.gov.uk/pension-credit/eligibility


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You can spend your money on replacing that you need, such as a new bed.

 

But if you decided you wanted a holiday in the Caribbean, that would be seen as deprivation and you'd be treated as still having the money.

 

Anything you do buy, you do need to keep the receipt.

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Pension credits are affected by savings, but if the savings are proved to be purely from DLA saved up, I would suggest this is proved by Bank Statements and question raised about whether the savings should reduce pension credits.

 

https://www.gov.uk/pension-credit/eligibility

 

It becomes savings a month after issue if not spent and would then be classed as capital for means tested benefits.

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