Advice needed regarding implication of needs assessment

Hi, I am very concerned that mum and her property will be ‘drawn in’ to a needs assessment that the council want to carry out on her partner.
Her partner, to all intents and purposes, is a licensee. They got together 12 years ago in their 80’s and there was never any intention to live together. She started looking after him in her home when he developed altzheimer’s 4 years ago. He still has his own home for which he pays council tax, utilities etc; but isn’t safe to live there alone. Mum’s health is failing but we can care for her in her own home. We have financial power of attorney. Mum can no longer care for her partner without her help and we are withdrawing care for him.
His family are finally taking responsibility and have requested a needs assessment for him. The council are refusing to do this in his own home as he currently lives with mum. They have indicated that they intend to look at putting care into her home for him and that it is very unlikely they’ll put him in a home.
My concern is that mum will be drawn into this and that once she accepts carers into her home her property is at risk/flagged up as being up for grabs by the council. We have made it clear that we do not want a needs assessment for her but I don’t trust them.
We are considering issuing notice to leave to her partner via his family who are applying for deputyship. Can we do this a POA’s? Are we worrying unnecessarily? Unfortunately, mum now lacks capacity to see the bigger picture and will tell the social worker that everything is fine and she can cope. I am getting a report from her GP to support us in getting her partner moved out, but I am now very concerned about this needs assessment and think we need to refuse it being carried out in mum’s home. Can I do this?
Any advice about what we should do to protect our mum and her house is greatly appreciated.

I’d consult a solicitor. I’m sure Social Services have no legal right to access your property.

What are his family doing?

As you have Power of Attorney for mum, then it’s time to use it.

Thanks Bowlingbun

Solicitor suggests I get her GP to write a statement saying she can no longer care for her partner due to her age and other health conditions.
Social services have said they have to do the assessment there instead of his home because that’s where he is. I’ve done a bit more research and I don’t think I need to worry about the house as he would have to prove’ beneficial interest’ which he can’t. But I think they want to assess her needs as a carer which is where the GP statement would come in.
His family has asked for the assessment with a view to moving him into a home. But they may have a fight on their hands and will have to prove he lacks capacity as he won’t go willingly. It’s going to be awful because they will both be distraught.
Worse case scenario we may have to use our POA and give him notice to leave via his family who have applied for deputy.

If his family have applied for deputyship, that’s good. How long is it going to take? You need to make sure they have really done this, and know when they applied. Can it be hurried up in any way?

I’m sure they have done this because his son in law has been very apologetic that we’ve been left to deal with him for so long. It can take a few months apparently but that will only cover financial issues from what the solicitor tells me. I assume the needs assessment will be done prior to that.
My brother and me were going to be present with mum and her partner, but because we’re so concerned that the council will believe mum when she says they cope fine and will rule that he stays where he is with the help of additional carers, we are now thinking it would be better for his son-in-law to be there and for us to take mum out of the equation. They can’t force her to be there can they when we are saying she isn’t going to be his carer any more even though she wants to keep trying?
Ideally, we would like his family to find a care home, whilst they sort things out, and just take him. Otherwise, he’ll cry and mum will be distraught. Can they do that without a needs assessment?
We just don’t know the best way to go about this and what the council can and can’t do.

The council MUST do a Needs Assessment AND A CARERS ASSESSMENT before planning anything.
I’d suggest that under these circumstances they do mum’s Carers Assessment first. Really, just look at the doctor’s letter (and you could write one too as Attorney) and saying he has no right to be there and mum CANNOT care for him, he MUST go. Really stress, stress, and stress again that he has to go, and to concentrate the minds of all concerned, specify a fixed leaving date.

Does she HAVE to have a carer’s assessment if we are saying she is not going to care for him anymore?
If she does then we’ll have to be there. I was hoping to say everything I wanted before the day of the assessment then take mum out.
I don’t want to upset them by having a stand up row with the council in front of them

The Carers Assessment should not be done at the same time as the Needs Assessment.

That’s why I suggested that it was done in advance, so that they accepted that he couldn’t stay at her house due to her health needs. It’s supposed to “inform” decisions made relating to the care of the caree.

Thanks for the advice.

I have an appointment with her GP next Thursday so will arrange for a carer’s assessment after that and before his needs assessment. But I’ll submit all the information to the council for consideration prior to any assessment.

Yes, that might just short circuit the whole process.

I would ask a social worker if they would like this to happen to their mother or them when they are old? Being forced to have someone living in their house when they are too frail to even look after themselves, never mind him?!
Being forced to have a Social Services assessment done for him in her house, not his?

Don’t mince your words!

Hi Bowlingbun

Just another thought. What if mum refuses a carer’s assessment?

From what I’ve read she would have to be present or at least to have given permission for me to request one.

I’ve just phoned social services to request a carer’s assessment and they won’t even put anything on the system without her consent. I mentioned I was going to the GP on Thursday and understood that he could make a referral, but they said he would also need her consent.
So I’m back to square one with them having a joint assessment.

No it shouldn’t be a JOINT assessment, under any circumstances, the Carers Assessment (which assesses the ability to care, and one of the initial questions should be “are you willing and able to continue caring”. If the answer is “No” that should be the end of it, as no one can be forced to care for anyone else.

The social worker should not be demanding to see him in mum’s house, she has no legal right to do this.
It really would help if you involved a solicitor who can do the fighting on mum’s behalf. If mum has modest savings it might be possible to get legal aid, as the council is failing to fulfil it’s statutory duties.

It’s mum’s house, if she doesn’t want carers in her house that’s her right too!

The problem is mum’s answer would be yes she does want to continue (despite the detriment to herself) and my answer is no I don’t want to continue to help her care for him. But I can’t request a carer’s assessment without her consent and she wouldn’t give it. Is the answer to get a carer’s assessment on myself?
My solicitor is of the opinion that they CAN demand to do the needs assessment in mum’s house because that is where he lives despite owning his own home. Otherwise I don’t think they will do it.
His family won’t do anything without the needs assessment because they are hoping the council will find a home for him.
This is driving me demented.

Would your solicitor write a stern letter to the family saying his presence is detrimental to mum’s health?

The family are wrong in their idea that it matters where the needs assessment is done may make his chances of getting a place in a home easier. It should not make a scrap of difference, as his needs are constant.

I saw the GP this morning. He’s making a referral today for mum to have a social worker. I don’t see how that will help. GP wasn’t much help. I sat there crying and saying my only option was to take him to his home on 31/3, leave him there and phone the safeguarding team. He said “yes but you can’t do that can you” i,e, because of my conscience.

I spoke to social services this morning, having established the needs assessment just has to be in a convenient place, and demanded it is done at his house. Despite telling them his address on 3 separate occasions it is not noted on the records!! At which point I lost the plot and ranted. If they can’t/won’t record the details of his property how can I trust that they have any intention whatsoever to take it into account? Complaint going in. I wanted to put what I’d said in writing to him - he didn’t know the address and is having to phone me back?! Seems they don’t want anything in writing.

I still insisted it be done at his house because if they are looking to put care into the home, it will be in his home. My mum has been (albeit willingly but without capacity) financially abused for 4 years and putting care into her home won’t solve that, nor will it solve the issue of who has to deal with the medical emergencies.

I also said that I will not be present at his needs assessment and that they need to get his family to be there.

I am having to deal with this alone really. My brothers are away and my partner is offering no support whatsoever.

The solution is now simple. You take him to his house AND DON’T BRING HIM HOME AGAIN.

I’m not surprised your husband has had enough. Explain to him what I’ve suggested and get his help to do this.
Don’t feel guilty, you’ve done enough. Protecting your mum has to be the top priority.
Social Services have to have a Rapid Response Team for emergencies, let them sort him out. Then make sure he doesn’t go back to mum’s.