Posted: Monday, 18 June 2018 @ 14:55
As has been recently reported the number of LPA investigations by the Office of the Public Guardian has risen with following a Royal London Freedom of Information request it has been disclosed there were 1,729 investigations into LPA attorneys.
This is all well and good but this is just the tip of the iceberg of LPA abuse.
Giving someone a LPA is effectively a potential license to steal money and there are three very good reasons why individuals think they can get away with this:
1. Even though the OPG (the Office of Public Guardian) can investigate potential financial abuse their investigations powers cease the moment the donor dies. This means that a potential way to control LPA abuse is out of the window particularly as much financial abuse is only discovered after the donor has died.
2. By far the most effective way to control LPA abuse centres on scrutinising probate accounts once the donor(elderly person) has died which involves making an application for inventory and account. However, some judges are reluctant to delve into financial activity prior to the deceased dying but this is often where the bulk of the dodgy activity has happened. How do you square the circle?
3 Family indifference. At a time when there is much stress and the rest of the family appear to face legal hurdles to confront and overcome potential fraud, many families just give up.
LPA fraud can be overcome but the key is targeted and disciplined legal work which often(though not exclusively) focuses on inventory and account as your legal method.