SCOPE OF THIS CHAPTER

This procedure applies to people living in Hull City Council operated residential homes or supported living accommodation who need support to manage their finances. It does not apply to people living in their own homes. If someone living at home needs support from paid staff to manage money, this should be identified in detail through their care plan. If a person lacks Capacity to make any financial decisions or to manage either their financial affairs or their day to day finances, the Mental Capacity Act 2005 should be consulted to establish whether they need an appointee, a Deputy or whether a Lasting Power of Attorney or Enduring Power of Attorney exists.

RELATED CHAPTERS

Mental Capacity Act 2005: Policy and Practice Guidelines (Including Mental Capacity Assessments).

Mental Capacity Act 2005: Guidance for Best Interests Meetings

Best Interest Decision Making

1. Principles

Everyone who has the capacity to choose how to use their money has the right to do so. Some people may need support to make choices or to exercise those choices, but this should not override their right to access their money and decide how they wish to spend it.

Everyone must be assumed to have capacity unless there is clear evidence to the contrary, in which case an assessment of capacity must take place and be recorded.

If someone needs regular assistance, this must be agreed and detailed in the care plan.

2. Procedural Steps

Step Action By Whom
1. If it is determined that a customer who has the mental capacity to decide how s/he wants to use their money needs support to do so, s/he should be asked what support they want or feel they need. The nature and form of support should not be determined by what other people receive, but on what that individual wants. Keyworker/ manager
2. The support to be offered should be agreed between the customer, the team manager and the staff who will be providing support and should be detailed in the person’s Care Plan. Keyworker/ manager/ other staff
3. In order to safeguard the interests of all concerned, any supported transaction must be recorded, dated and signed by two people so that there is a clear audit trail. Care staff
4. If a customer wishes to keep their money either on their person or in their room, they should be advised about security in a communal setting and advised to purchase a lockable box and/or a lockable cupboard to keep their money in. They should also be advised on the risks of holding large sums of money. Keyworker/ manager
5. If a customer wants their money to be held by staff on behalf of the city council, this must be held in a separate wallet, box or container named for the individual and locked in the safe. The amount of money held should only be sufficient for day to day needs, should be kept at a minimal level and the total amount of money held in a safe should never exceed the insurance limit. This will vary, and guidance should be sought from either the City Treasury or from the insurance policy giver. The safe should be kept locked at all times, with the only key held by the duty officer. Keyworker/ manager
6. When money is taken into safekeeping, or is given back to the customer, the transaction must be recorded and signed by both the staff member and the customer if s/he is able. If the customer is not able, then a second staff signature must be obtained. Care staff
7. If money is taken out of safekeeping which will be held by a staff member and spent by them in consultation with the customer, all expenditure must be accounted for by a receipt. Examples of this may be when a staff member takes a customer out to buy goods where the customer can choose what s/he wants but cannot understand costs or work out whether their change is correct. Care staff
8. Following the shopping trip, receipts and monies should be checked to make sure they balance and brief details of the expenditure, total spent and total remaining in safekeeping should be recorded, dated and signed by the staff member and the customer if s/he is able to do so. If s/he is not able, then a second staff signature should be obtained. Care staff
9. People who share accommodation may sometimes wish to make joint or communal purchases. If this is done of their own free will, this is acceptable but staff should ascertain that no pressure has been put on people to contribute if they do not want to. Staff should create a clear record which details what each person has contributed which should be signed by all concerned. Care staff
10. If a customer lacks the Capacity to make any financial decisions, including those about day to day spending, enquiries should made with their family to see if anyone holds a Deputyship, Lasting Power of Attorney or Enduring Power of Attorney or is a Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) appointee. If there is no-one with these powers, enquiries should be made to see if a family member is suitable and willing to apply to the DWP for Appointeeship. An appointee can manage the customer’s benefit payments and make decisions about day to day spending on the person’s behalf and in their best interest for ‘necessaries’ such as toiletries, sweets and clothes but cannot open a bank account for the person, or withdraw money from an existing account. If a withdrawal from the bank is necessary, an application must be made to the Court of Protection for a one-off decision. A family member who holds an appointeeship may wish to manage the money from the person’s benefits him or herself, or they may delegate this to staff. If there is no family member suitable and/or willing, an application should be made to the Head of Adult Services for authority to seek a Corporate Appointeeship. If agreement is given, an application should be made to the DWP using the online application form and process. The Head of Service will become the Corporate Appointee but will delegate day to day responsibility to a named staff member.

Any and all transactions made by a Corporate Appointee or delegate must be recorded, signed and dated and then countersigned by a second staff member.

Keyworker/ manager
11. If a customer needs a staff member to accompany him/her on an outing or activity, this must be either detailed on the customer’s care plan and agreed by the budget holder or be separately agreed by the budget holder. The customer must not pay the staff member’s expenses; these must either be paid by the staff member and claimed back through an expenses claim, or be given to the staff member prior to the outing. Receipts for expenditure must be provided and any expenditure must be recorded, signed and dated. Manager
12. Financial records must be regularly audited by the team manager or a delegated representative and must be kept for seven years. Manager