Managing financial, health and legal affairs

My father is very confused and not managing his affairs very well. What can I do? 

If your father has not seen a doctor about his confusion get him to see his GP as soon as possible. It is important to have a health check as the confusion may be caused by a physical illness that requires treating like an infection, pain or a chronic illness that is not well controlled.

Finances can be tricky to manage if you have memory problems. To protect him you need to get a Financial Lasting Power of Attorney in place as soon as you can. You do not necessarily have to fully implement it straight away but it gives everyone protection. Setting up Direct Debits to pay the bills will relieve some of the household management stress. You can put a limit on how much cash can be taken out at any one time by speaking to the bank and make sure only the amount necessary for a few weeks or a month is in the Current Account.

A Health and Welfare Lasting Power of Attorney will enable you to speak to doctors and social services on his behalf and receive letters about appointments and reports about his care and health. This is very useful to prevent missing appointments and treatments.

Set up a postal and phone preference system to reduce the likelihood of unwanted mail or phone calls. If you father uses a computer ensure you know the passwords so you can access bank accounts and online payments etc.

You can purchase mobile phones with larger numbers and buttons; ensure an emergency contact number is on the phone in case of emergency. You can also purchase ID bracelets and necklaces so that you can be contacted in case of emergency.