0800 652 3371

 

Financial Abuse, Exploitation and Fraud Against Vulnerable People

Financial abuse of vulnerable people is on the increase in the UK, despite the legal systems which are in place to protect them.

If someone lacks the mental capacity to manage their own affairs, someone will either be managing them informally (such as a friend or carer) or on a formal basis by a court-appointed deputy or attorney.

The specialist lawyers in Lanyon Bowdler’s Court of Protection understand the symptoms of financial abuse and are regularly instructed to assist with the removal of deputies and attorneys. Our Court of Protection Solicitors also advise in other circumstances, such as objections to an application to the Court of Protection by someone suspected as being unsuitable to act as an attorney or deputy.

Indicators of Financial Abuse 

Being familiar with the warning signs makes it much easier to stop any suspected abuse at an early stage. Things to look out for include:

  • Withdrawals of large sums of money from a bank account, or frequent cashpoint withdrawals.
  • Signatures on cheques which don’t resemble the person’s signature, or cheques signed when the person can no longer write.
  • Changes to the person’s will or the creation of a new will, sometimes using a new solicitor previously not known to the person.
  • The sudden inclusion of additional names on bank accounts.
  • Unexplained transfers of property or assets.
  • The sudden interest of previously uninvolved relatives.
  • Lack of basic things that the person should be able to afford, such as clothing and items of personal hygiene.
  • Bills going unpaid when someone is meant to be paying them on the person’s behalf.
  • Deliberate isolation of the person from their family and friends.
  • Disappearance of valuable items from their home.

Remedies

Suspicions should first be given to your local police or council’s Vulnerable Adult Unit, depending on the circumstances.

Where the suspect is an attorney under a registered Enduring or Lasting Power of Attorney, or a court-appointed deputy, options include notifying the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) who can investigate the claims under the Mental Capacity Act 2005, or applying directly to the Court of Protection to remove and replace the deputy or attorney - which is where Lanyon Bowdler would come in.

Contact Lanyon Bowdler

Give us a call or complete our online enquiry form, to see how we can help. We have offices in Telford, Shrewsbury, Oswestry, Ludlow, Bromyard and Hereford so are able to act for clients all over Shropshire, Herefordshire, Mid and North Wales and across the Midlands.

For more advice about how we can help, please contact Neil Davies, Head of Court of Protection, or a member of his team.

Testimonials

All staff were polite, efficient and professional. Advice was clear and informative. I like the fact that everyone explained legalities with clarity.

- Mrs L Draycott, Oswestry

Excellent representation in court

- Mr Gibson, Telford

Excellent service in a clear and concise manner.

- Derwen College, Oswestry

She and her team were amazing and without fault during our house purchase. I couldn't imagine us using anyone else in the future. The team will be easy to recommend.

- Mr Roberts, Shrewsbury

Dealing with one person when possible. Clear, simple advice.

- Mrs S A Flynn, London

Quotes

Great, friendly staff - really approachable and professional. Never pushy!

- Fairfield High School, Hereford

Detailed and up to date knowledge of our case throughout the whole process.

- Mr P Hill & Dr L Hill, Lincoln

Very good team across many disciplines.

- Woodland Heritage Ltd, Surrey

Very professional standards and advice.

- Mr S Barnes & J Barnes, Hereford

Helpful and courteous. Took time to explain complex issues.

- Mr J Barrett & Mrs W Barrett, Oswestry

Latest Case Study

Lady Lacking Capacity has Cash Withdrawn by Family Member

W was an elderly lady who lacked capacity to manage her financial affairs. Sh...

Read More

Latest News

17 Apr 2019

CASE UPDATE: Can parties agree to extend time of determination for prior approval applications?

Permitted development rights are simpler developments which do not require a formal application for planning permissi...

Read More
16 Apr 2019

Breakthrough blood test now available to test for pre-eclampsia

It has recently been reported that pregnant women in England will now be able to have a blood test, which can check f...

Read More
16 Apr 2019

Bromyard Speed Festival 2019

We have an office in Bromyard, an historic Herefordshire market town with a wealth of mediaeval half-timbered and vic...

Read More