NS&I’s Mishandling of Elderly Father’s Financial Affairs and Power of Attorney

NS&I’s Mishandling of Elderly Father’s Financial Affairs and Power of Attorney

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In a frustrating ordeal involving NS&I (National Savings & Investments), a reader recounts his attempts to open NS&I Income Bonds on behalf of his elderly father, who resides in a care home.

The reader holds Enduring Power of Attorney (EPA) for his father, granting him the authority to manage his father’s financial matters.

The intention was to invest the proceeds from the sale of the father’s house into NS&I Guaranteed Income Bonds to cover the costs of his care home.

Contacting NS&I, the reader was promised an application form, and the topic of EPA was discussed.

A letter later arrived, supposedly containing the required forms, but they were missing.

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Upon further inquiry, the helpline suggested printing the forms online. However, upon examination, the forms required a Power of Attorney document, replacing EPA, to be signed precisely on each page by either a solicitor or the beneficiary (the father, in this case).

As the father was visually impaired and only able to provide a signature, the specific wording couldn’t be met.

The original EPA document was sent in the hopes of expediting the process, but NS&I’s response was lackluster, indicating they hadn’t even opened the application letter.

This was followed by the return of the Power of Attorney document, marked incomplete and demanding proper signing on each page before NS&I would proceed.

Interestingly, NS&I had debited £240,000 from the father’s account shortly after receiving the application, despite not progressing with the application.

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Frustrated by conflicting information and lack of progress, the reader sought help from Helen Kirrane of This is Money.

Kirrane’s investigation revealed that the main issue was the missing section of the Power of Attorney document, which NS&I failed to communicate clearly.

Eventually, the document was accepted with the reader as the attorney, acting on behalf of the father.

NS&I’s actions were confusing and distressing for the reader, who had never dealt with such a substantial financial responsibility before.

Despite NS&I’s mishandling, they had cashed the £240,000 cheque while simultaneously claiming a problem with the application due to the EPA issue.

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Eventually, NS&I apologized for their poor service, provided an apology payment of £150, and ensured that the Guaranteed Income Bonds account was backdated to the appropriate date with no loss of interest.

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The mission is to maintain editorial independence and provide reliable financial information.

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