What is an Appointee?
An Appointee is a registered person (usually a family member, a friend or a solicitor) who has agreed to take responsibility for managing an individual’s state benefits to help pay their bills. This is different from a Lasting Power of Attorney appointed by the Court of Protection and given to a person who then manages all financial aspects of someone’s life.
The process of HAD being set-up as an Appointee for a client begins with a referral from the Council stating that they would like us to take on this role. The level of support would then need to be confirmed, and a fee agreed for HAD doing this work.
Once this is all agreed in writing, one of our Welfare Benefits Advisors will then contact the Department of Work and Pensions which will either telephone her or send a member of their team over to meet with her to sort out all the relevant paperwork etc.
So what exactly do we do?
The main areas of work as Appointee entail managing the client’s benefits and using them to pay bills and provide an agreed allocation of these funds as cash throughout the week for whatever the client would like to spend it on if there are sufficient funds available. If the benefits received do not cover all expenses, this will need to be examined and priority payments made first before anything else. We are unable to provide debt management services, meaning they cannot negotiate any debts on the client’s behalf and can only pay off the full amounts, if and when possible.
What about spending money?
We do not deliver any money, whether it be to the client (who should come into our office to collect their weekly agreed amount of cash) or to any other organisation whom HAD are paying for whatever reason. We always look at paying any bills/making transfers via online banking whenever possible and writing a cheque as backup. Cash would be a last resort when no other method of payment is possible, or in an emergency.
The cost of the Appointeeship service is £850.00 a year. VAT is not applicable to this service.