Committee (6th Day)

Part of Care Bill [HL] – in the House of Lords at 6:15 pm on 16th July 2013.

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Photo of Lord Lipsey Lord Lipsey Labour 6:15 pm, 16th July 2013

That could arise, I suppose, but it has not arisen in this case. I am not even sure—it is very difficult with these cases, and I do not know if it is even known—whether the man I am referring to has attempted to find that way around it. This lady gets distressed at the mere mention of financial affairs, so it is not surprising that he is ducking away from that. As the noble Baroness says, there could be capacity issues. In certain circumstances, clearly, there could be a court decision that she no longer has capacity to exercise discretion, but that is a long and difficult route to go down in the situation of this poor old man and his poor wife. That is the sort of situation that I am trying to avoid. I am not trying to open the door so that everybody can get away with claiming everything. I am simply saying that if people have inadvertently misled the local authority, the authority should not go after them in the courts to get its money back. It seems a moderate proposal, and I hope that the Minister will be able to respond positively to it.