Advice needed please

28
Posted 12th Mar
I hope someone could help me out here and give me some good advice . Well I have an old lady who is our neighbour she lives across the street from our house . I have been living in my current house for over a year now and everyday I would see this lady outside her house every morning she would wave at me and I would wave back so that’s how we would greet each other almost everyday then for a while I stopped seeing her and after few months I wondered if she was ok so last week I went and knocked on her door to check on her she is a lovely lady I asked if she was ok and haven’t seen her for a while to which she responded that she had a little accident and was unable to leave the house . This lovely old lady has no family or friends around her only some care workers who comes and visit her 3 times a day. and just as a good neighbour I asked if she needed anything she could always give me a shout and I left my number for her . Then the next day she rang me on my phone and asked me if I could come over she needed something . So I went by and she asked me to get her some cigarettes and milk she give me the money . I was happy to do that for her I did her shopping and returned her change. she thanked me for my time and trouble and I said not a problem as a neighbour that’s the least I could do for you . Then next day she again called me and asked me to get her some chicken wraps and asked me to get her card and get some money from her account as she needs some cash . I was happy to do her shopping but to get her bank card and get her cash I was not comfortable doing it . So I told her I can take her to the bank by my car she can get her money herself to which she replied that due to her condition it’s not possible for her to leave the house and that one neighbour that she trust is currently on holiday . Now I said to her I will do it but I am not sure what if I get her money and she later refuses that I didn’t give her. I may take a video as an evidence but why should I go through all this trouble then again I feel bad that she has no one to help her and she trusted me and I let her down I am not sure if she has dementia and what if she forgets me giving her money . I think I will refuse to help her with this am I doing the right thing ??
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OP, in spite of what people say, if you are able to control what you can do carefully with diary entries, I do sometimes,

1. Do persist with compassion and other good old abstract qualities of being human.
2. Neighbourly love...do what is right for your heart
3. Take on the challenge and feel emotional reward in helping towards a better quality of (end of) life for others.

Else, you may regret that you didn't do enough when you could have...
Edited by: "splender" 12th Mar
28 Comments
I drew money out for neighbour many times. Be careful not to become their carer though..
Get her to sign up to a supermarket home delivery and just eat.
Can’t she ask the care staff to withdraw the money?? Normally they do it all
I totally understand your concern
Get a receipt with the withdrawal. It'll have time and date etc..
IamMT12/03/2020 21:16

Get her to sign up to a supermarket home delivery and just eat.


She seems to have a very strict diet only Cooked Ham and chicken wraps with bread that’s all she eats and since she is so old and only uses one had so I doubt it she will be able to use any mobile app beside she only uses home phone only
Misslovely12/03/2020 21:20

Can’t she ask the care staff to withdraw the money?? Normally they do it a …Can’t she ask the care staff to withdraw the money?? Normally they do it all I totally understand your concern


My wifes grandad recently had a care worker steal £160 they're not all trustworthy.
Misslovely12/03/2020 21:20

Can’t she ask the care staff to withdraw the money?? Normally they do it a …Can’t she ask the care staff to withdraw the money?? Normally they do it all I totally understand your concern


I wondered that too but don’t know why she wouldn’t ask them
.MUFC.12/03/2020 21:25

My wifes grandad recently had a care worker steal £160 they're not all …My wifes grandad recently had a care worker steal £160 they're not all trustworthy.


I know seen that stuff in tv but I’m sure 5% of them do it
angelinawah12/03/2020 21:24

She seems to have a very strict diet only Cooked Ham and chicken wraps …She seems to have a very strict diet only Cooked Ham and chicken wraps with bread that’s all she eats and since she is so old and only uses one had so I doubt it she will be able to use any mobile app beside she only uses home phone only


It's really not a good idea for her to share her bank card pin with anyone else. If she has carers three times a day, I would suggest you discuss this with them.
Misslovely12/03/2020 21:26

I know seen that stuff in tv but I’m sure 5% of them do it


We only knew because they took all the new £20 notes. Could have been any one of 4 care workers. Really makes me sick how anyone can stoop so low. His health seems to have declined too and I'm sure that hasn't helped. He's only been having carers in for last 4 weeks too. Although he did have a regular cleaner that is 100% trustworthy etc..
Edited by: ".MUFC." 12th Mar
tardytortoise12/03/2020 21:28

needs to be helped to find and nominate a power of …needs to be helped to find and nominate a power of attorneyhttps://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/family/looking-after-people/managing-affairs-for-someone-else/


I asked her if she has any family or friends . She had no one .. one cousin who lives in another part of England and she is old too and has dementia
.MUFC.12/03/2020 21:29

We only knew because they took all the new £20 notes. Could have been any …We only knew because they took all the new £20 notes. Could have been any one of 4 care workers. Really makes me sick how anyone can stoop so low. His health seems to have declined too and I'm sure that hasn't helped. He's only been having carers in for last 4 weeks too. Although he did have a regular cleaner that is 100% trustworthy etc..


Why don’t you install a camera on their premises ?
OP, in spite of what people say, if you are able to control what you can do carefully with diary entries, I do sometimes,

1. Do persist with compassion and other good old abstract qualities of being human.
2. Neighbourly love...do what is right for your heart
3. Take on the challenge and feel emotional reward in helping towards a better quality of (end of) life for others.

Else, you may regret that you didn't do enough when you could have...
Edited by: "splender" 12th Mar
angelinawah12/03/2020 21:36

Why don’t you install a camera on their premises ?


It literally only happened last week. We're considering it but at the same time don't want to invade his privacy etc.. He's still got his marbles etc.. It's his mobility that's his main issue. We've suggested to him that he only keeps a minimal amount of cash which he has agreed. Fortunately the care company have taken it very seriously. It's resulted in one of them being sacked but of course no admission.

I think her trusting you as a friendly neighbor is better than trusting random carers that although most are professional there are some that will quite clearly take advantage.
.MUFC.12/03/2020 21:42

It literally only happened last week. We're considering it but at the same …It literally only happened last week. We're considering it but at the same time don't want to invade his privacy etc.. He's still got his marbles etc.. It's his mobility that's his main issue. We've suggested to him that he only keeps a minimal amount of cash which he has agreed. Fortunately the care company have taken it very seriously. It's resulted in one of them being sacked but of course no admission. I think her trusting you as a friendly neighbor is better than trusting random carers that although most are professional there are some that will quite clearly take advantage.


You know I don’t mind doing it to be honest . I personally go shopping almost 3 times a week and to get her stuff or get some cash it will not cause me any kind of inconvenience. But it’s just that she showed me her bank account from which she wanted me to get her money out . The amount in the account was eye popping lol it’s just as other neighbour is already dealing with her and I don’t know what is going on I just don’t want to get involved I may lend her some money and maybe when the other neighbour is back she can then get her cash for her . You know with that amount of money I don’t know who else has access to it
splender12/03/2020 21:41

OP, in spite of what people say, if you are able to control what you can …OP, in spite of what people say, if you are able to control what you can do carefully with diary entries, I do sometimes,1. Do persist with compassion and other good old abstract qualities of being human.2. Neighbourly love...do what is right for your heart3. Take on the challenge and feel emotional reward in helping towards a better quality of (end of) life for others.Else, you may regret that you didn't do enough when you could have...


splender12/03/2020 21:41

OP, in spite of what people say, if you are able to control what you can …OP, in spite of what people say, if you are able to control what you can do carefully with diary entries, I do sometimes,1. Do persist with compassion and other good old abstract qualities of being human.2. Neighbourly love...do what is right for your heart3. Take on the challenge and feel emotional reward in helping towards a better quality of (end of) life for others.Else, you may regret that you didn't do enough when you could have...


Very well said Splender . I personally believe in doing good for others without any expectations . But in the past I have experienced that sometimes even if your intentions are good and you want to do good people will misjudge you anyway
angelinawah12/03/2020 21:48

You know I don’t mind doing it to be honest . I personally go shopping a …You know I don’t mind doing it to be honest . I personally go shopping almost 3 times a week and to get her stuff or get some cash it will not cause me any kind of inconvenience. But it’s just that she showed me her bank account from which she wanted me to get her money out . The amount in the account was eye popping lol it’s just as other neighbour is already dealing with her and I don’t know what is going on I just don’t want to get involved I may lend her some money and maybe when the other neighbour is back she can then get her cash for her . You know with that amount of money I don’t know who else has access to it


Yes I understand, If it's not something you're comfortable with then tell her but I'm sure you're more trustworthy than some
What does she want cash for if she never leaves her home? It is not as if she can pay her bills in cash or her shopping in cash?

Maybe she likes getting an indian or chinese or pizza delivered?

To protect yourself then maybe get her to write cheques to you & you get the cash out of your own bank & get her to sign a receipt for the cash you have given her. No comeback then & you have the evidence on your own statements & receipts about what went on.
Ask her if she plays poker, if she does let her win the first few sessions.
wayners12/03/2020 21:14

I drew money out for neighbour many times. Be careful not to become their …I drew money out for neighbour many times. Be careful not to become their carer though..


+1 for this. It sounds like you're becoming heavily involved very quickly. It could start to become a chore and you're in too deep to say no. It could have a huge impact on your home life. I would let the carers know.
This is a difficult one. Your concern would be that other people may say you are stealing money from her and that you are taking advantage of her if you withdraw money from her bank.

I don't know, but it may be illegal to use someone else's card to withdraw money, even with their permission, if it ever becomes a problem. You said she has dementia, so even if she signs a receipt for the money you pass to her, it may be argued she doesn't really know what she is signing.
If the lady has carers then she will likely have a Care Co-ordinator from an appointed charity or the local council, usually Adult Services.

It might be worth asking the lady if you could contact them to speak to someone regarding her care plan. Explain that you probably won’t be able to discuss the lady personally but the Care Co-ordinator will then contact the lady to check if she is receiving all the help she needs. They might even be able to offer you some advice on how best to help whilst ensuring that you are not personally left vulnerable to any future accusations.

Sadly, some councils do not have the resources to review & update all clients and they might rely on feedback from the Carers which could be different people visiting each time.

Also, AgeUk actually do offer Online Shopping assistance for elderly people. They set it up so that AgeUk take a shopping order over the phone off a person & then they do the order online for them, so that the store takes care of the delivery. I think that service might vary from branch to branch but it is something that the council can set up.

And lastly, the lady might also appreciate your time & company. When I was very ill a few years ago, I could get carers to assist me with meals & general housework, and stores to deliver shopping but I could go for weeks before I had an actual conversation with anyone.

I think your being a great neighbour

Hope this helps
She will probably have a social worker, ask to meet with the social worker and have the social worker witness an agreement , preferably a written one.
angelinawah12/03/2020 21:48

You know I don’t mind doing it to be honest . I personally go shopping a …You know I don’t mind doing it to be honest . I personally go shopping almost 3 times a week and to get her stuff or get some cash it will not cause me any kind of inconvenience. But it’s just that she showed me her bank account from which she wanted me to get her money out . The amount in the account was eye popping lol it’s just as other neighbour is already dealing with her and I don’t know what is going on I just don’t want to get involved I may lend her some money and maybe when the other neighbour is back she can then get her cash for her . You know with that amount of money I don’t know who else has access to it


She’s good for the money, so why don’t you just pay for the shopping and keep the receipts and when the other neighbor comes back from holiday get the money back. If needed you could always get her to sign something or talk about it when a carer is there as a witness...
angelinawah12/03/2020 21:34

I asked her if she has any family or friends . She had no one .. one …I asked her if she has any family or friends . She had no one .. one cousin who lives in another part of England and she is old too and has dementia



Please read all that link I posted. You need to cover yourself legally and so does your neighbour. Altruism will only take you and your neighbour so far.
The link talked about getting cover from the bank whilst power of attorney may seem just now to be a little over the top. But you, and your neighbour, need to think longer term. God forbid something serious happens to her (or you)? What happens then?

EDIT I should also add that there may exist in your area an Independent Centre for independent living which could be a useful resource as could your local AGE UK.
Edited by: "tardytortoise" 13th Mar
Just to put kindness aside for the moment, my main worry here would be that if 'another' neighbour is also helping this person with handling finances - you could unwittingly find yourself as "their" scapegoat if money DOES start to go missing. They might see you as a very convenient alibi. Not casting any aspersions mind...

There is no doubt that what you are doing is extremely noble, gracious and caring and there should be more of it in today's society - so - good on you, OP. Sadly, there are also many other 'types' who take advantage and/or don't wish to get involved because of gossip/reliance/misconstrued circumstance etc.

My Father made the mistake (yes, I will use the word mistake) of offering to help an elderly woman ONCE - and then he was dogged, nay plagued by her at the drop of a hat to do things. She would just phone him on a whim and demand he take her into town to go shopping or to the bank. She even got him to take her to the surgery one day for a test and asked him to wait for her. She then got a taxi home - and just left him waiting at the surgery! He eventually went inside and asked of her whereabouts and they said she'd left over an hour before. She never apologised either - just apparently laughed and said "Oh, I thought you knew." How? How would he know...

Being 'neighbourly' is a lovely thing but it can turn on a sixpence very quickly. Especially when money comes in to play. I don't have any "cure all" answers as it's down to the individual. I know; if it were me; I would flatly refuse ANY request regarding the circumstance of using someone's cashpoint card - not only from the standpoint of my own safety but also theirs as the bank would have little sympathy if they were to become aware the cardholder has divulged their PIN to a stranger. You may be a neighbour but it's no different to me handing you my card in the street and asking you to withdraw money for me as I can't read the screen.

I wish you all the best and know it's a difficult situation so hope you make the correct decision. Thank you for posting a lovely story to read. My only criticism of it (and I say this jokingly!) - Paragraphs, please!

Kindest regards, Phsy.
angelinawah12/03/2020 21:34

I asked her if she has any family or friends . She had no one .. one …I asked her if she has any family or friends . She had no one .. one cousin who lives in another part of England and she is old too and has dementia


Some people made some good points. Regarding the cash withdrawal part, getting a receipt for every withdrawal is a minimum as well as I said , kept a diary entry. Next step is to find out which authority has her on their radar for social services, either a local authority and/or a charity, then write to a manager there to let them know of your role. This then gives you a recorded measure of engagement and involvement. Possibly, if a next-of-kin emerges, then, your next level of safeguard is to be in contact with this next-of-kin. To summarise: as a minimum, keep admin and diary entry , best protection is, send a SMS/email to social services/next of kin of the help that you offered: cash withdrawal, purchased amount and change handed-over with dates.
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