What to do if applying for the Fair Deal and the Applicant has lost capacity
Following the introduction of the Assisted Decision Making (Capacity) Act 2015 in late April of this year, how you deal with an Applicant who has lost capacity applying for the Fair Deal has changed.
The fact that the act has taken 8 years to come into law one would have thought that there would have been more consideration in particular with regards to the Fair Deal/ Nursing Home Support Scheme which unfortunately there clearly was not.
Up to the Act becoming law if an applicant for the Fair Deal who required the Nursing Home loan had lost capacity a Care Representative Order could be applied for to the Courts which allowed the appointed Representative to sign the loan application and consent to place a charge on the applicant’s home. This CRO could be applied for by the applicant’s family member, or they could ask a Solicitor to apply on their behalf. This was a straightforward system to use, and it worked for those applicants who had lost capacity and did not have an Enduring Power of Attorney in place.
With the new Act the Care Representative Order has been abolished and has been replaced by a Decision-Making Representative Order which has to be applied for online to the Courts. Apparently, the process is so easy that a family member can apply for it. I am being sarcastic, as from my clients’ experiences to date this is far from easy as many legal terms are used. Solicitors are currently being trained on the Act so not all will be able to help you. Hopefully it will get easier in time.
The other major change arising from the act which forced the HSE to change its application for the Nursing Home Support Scheme for the first time since 2009 is that a brother or sister or friend of an applicant can no longer sign the application on their behalf (previously they could). This is because they are no longer deemed important enough under the act and are not listed as Specified Persons!
A Specified Person is now:
• Your spouse or partner
• Your child if over 18 years old
• A registered medical practitioner
• A register nurses.
• A registered social worker
How no’s 3 to 5 are more important than a brother or Sister or a friend I cannot understand. Not everyone has a child or a spouse and their closest relative who most likely from our experience will be looking after them, will be their brother’s and Sisters and they are not deemed important enough to sign a form. They now have to go and get an already overburdened Doctor to sign the application or a nurse or social worker who may not even know the individual. Somebody really has not taught this out.
As I stated earlier the HSE had to issue a new application form to take account of the new Act and to make sure the form was compliant with it as the old one did allow brother’s and sisters and even friends to submit applications for the Fair Deal on behalf of the applicant.
In their wisdom the new application form has increased in size from 22 pages to 36 pages. One has to read 12 pages of information before one has the opportunity to fill in your name. This form is frightening applicants and their families just by its size alone. The good news is that most people will only have to fill in pages 13 to 24 or if the loan is required pages 25-27 as well.
I have had the privilege of using the service on 2 separate occasions and I can honestly say that it was the most professional service I received in the area of providing advice around that fair deal System run by the HSE.
The cost of the service was more than out weighed by the savings accrued as a result of Toms expertise and advice throughout (several thousand euro in savings)
We were so lucky to have an expert such as Tom who provided information, expertise and most of all personal advice during the entire process and cannot thank him enough for his support and assistance.
Brian Mac manus
Tom Murray Fair Deal was a huge help to us. He guided us the whole way through. His advice is impeccable. He responds to phone calls and e mails immediately and produces documents almost in real time. I could not emphasise too strongly the help Tom provided. Worth every penny. Thanks Tom.
I contacted Tom for advice regarding the Fair Deal Scheme as my mother required full time care in a nursing home. Tom's expertise and advice was invaluable. He made the whole daunting process very easy. He had a list of required documents (some that I didn’t know I would need). He took the pain and worry out of the whole process and put my mind at rest. I cannot recommend Tom and this service highly enough. I consider this to be money well spent. Thanks Tom.
Once you make the first call to Tom regarding the Fair Deal Scheme , he makes it all very easy to understand and navigates you easily through the process. The thought of Fair Deal can be daunting for any family but with Tom's assistance and knowledge of the scheme it was an easy process.
Excellent advice, very professional
We contacted Tom with regard to my parents needing Nursing Home care and the Fair Deal process.
Tom's advice was absolutely invaluable to us and without his help we wouldn't have been able to get through this daunting and difficult process.
We can't thank him enough for his advice and support and would have no hesitation in recommending him.
I contacted Tom seeking advice on structuring a financial solution for both of my parent's long term care. Tom took the time to analyse in detail their particular needs and circumstances. This resulted in a long term sustainable financial solution under the Fair Deal Scheme. I would recommend Tom without hesitation, given the value his professional advise brought in guiding us to a long term sustainable financial solution.
Gave excellent advice and fully answered my follow-up questions.
We recently contacted Tom for help with the Fair Deal application process for our father. Although it is a process that can be quite daunting & ambiguous at times, Tom expertly guided us through. There wasn't a single question we had that he could not answer and apart from the financials at all, his extensive and insightful knowledge of the nursing home landscape was absolutely invaluable to us at such a difficult time. His response rate was extremely prompt at all times and he really went above and beyond for us. We could not possibly recommend Tom and his services enough.
I contacted Tom for advice regarding the Fair Deal Scheme as my mother required full time care in a nursing home. Tom's advice was invaluable, his knowledge was exceptional and he was very understanding at this difficult time.
I would not hesitate in recommending his services to anyone finding this process daunting.
Thank you Tom for putting my mind at ease.