WhenTuesday, June 15th from 6pm to 8pm UK time
WhereOnline symposium via Zoom.
FormatThere'll be a great line-up of speakers plus ample scope for discussion and debate.
Why you should attend
This Transparency Task Force symposium is timed to coincide with the World Elder Abuse Day. However, in the interests of transparency we wish to make it clear that the timing is coincidental i.e. a complete fluke.
However, we can’t escape the reality that the issues that motivated us to run this event in the first place do align very strongly with what the World Elder Abuse Day is all about – that is a grave concern about the harsh reality that the elderly are vulnerable in many ways including in the risk of having their wealth removed from them.
And let’s be clear on one thing straight off: we are not talking about just the wealthy elderly; no, we are going to be focusing on the wealth of the elderly, however wealthy they may be.
This is a big and complex topic with a multiplicity of interconnected issues. Our overall aim is not to solve the problems for that would be unrealistic. Rather, our aim is to initiate meaningful, ongoing dialogue about the problems the vulnerable elderly face when it comes to holding on to their wealth, with a view to working towards developing TTF’s policy position on these matters and to then go into campaign mode to turn policy initiatives into protective and prudent proposals that can lead to meaningful change, through the Parliamentarians, policy makers and regulators that we can and will engage with.
The “Fire Triangle” describes the idea that if you have oxygen, fuel and sufficient heat there will be fire. The diagram below works on the same principle, in that if you have vulnerable people that have accessible wealth that is unsupervised you will have risk. The risk is that the vulnerable elderly are at risk of losing their wealth in a multiplicity of ways.
Our symposium will be exploring the ways that the wealth of the vulnerable elderly is in jeopardy.
We’ll be considering issues such as:
- The protective role that Security Bonds can play
- The protective role that true professionals can play from a legal, wealth management and estate planning perspective
- What scope is there for innovation with regard to inheritance tax; for example perhaps a new Government Bond could be introduced with tax on encashment starting at 40% and tapering off to 0% at the tenth year – all credit to Harold Tillman for the idea
- How property wealth can be better utilised to maintain the quality of life for the elderly in care; with access to good ideas openly available to all, not just those with expensive advisers, whilst recognising the risk of misuse of equity release, particularly when advice about it is siloed
- Whether there is scope to simplify the bewilderingly complex rules and regulations that surround wealth, many of which are unfathomable to the aged
- The desperate need for the Financial Financial Ombudsman Service, recently deemed to be “not fit for purpose” by the Institute of Economic Affairs, to award fair compensation to victims of malpractice, malfeasance, misconduct and mis-selling
- Predation from unscrupulous relatives with or without the added complication of family feuds, for example feuds brought on by objections to the remarriage of a parent following widowhood
- The mis-use or poor use of the Power of Attorney
- Whether the elderly should be restricted from investing in unregulated products
- Improving the way that banks and other financial institutions care for the wealth and interests of their elderly clients
- The whole topic of criminal intent, rip-offs and scams by all kinds of “bad actors” including unethical investment, legal and insolvency “professionals”
- The elderly often being on uncompetitive tariffs for all kinds of things, sometimes lured into them by cunning ‘opt-out’ arrangements where the elderly person buys features he/she doesn’t need or want
- How can the UK’s crime prevention, detection and enforcement agencies raise their game; and should the police be spending more than 1% of their budget on fraud when it accounts for approximately a third of all crime?
- How can the regulators raise their game as well, by properly enforcing their various codes designed to provide additional protection to the vulnerable including the vulnerable elderly – FSMA and COBS being two that apply to financial services
- What scope is there to protect or even increase the true value of the basic old age pension in real terms
- How should later life care be properly funded?
- What should the banks be doing about Authorised Push Payment Fraud; and why aren’t they doing it?
- What are the relative merits of Lasting Powers of Attorney v Deputyships?
- What are the special risk factors associated with unregistered Enduring Powers of Attorney?
- How can proper safeguards be used to add an additional protective layer within legal constructs?
- What changes should be made to the way the Office of the Public Guardian operates?
- What can be done to get more/better data about the amount of abuse of LPAs that have taken place?
- What can be done to address the 4 common assertions that arise in Court of Protection cases which involve the removal of an attorney because they have unlawfully used the donor’s money, namely:
- ‘Mum had capacity and said I could have the money’
- ‘Mum would have wanted me to have this money, if she had mental capacity’
- ‘It will all be mine eventually’
- ‘I deserve this for the sacrifice I am making’.
That’s a long list of issues for us to consider. We won’t be able to cover them all but it just goes to show how deep, complex and interconnected the problems are. Ultimately, we are working towards co-creating a policy paper that will comprehensively set out the problems and what can be done about them.
Here's the programme and timings so far...
Welcome to the symposium, introductions and initial exploration of the main issues; by
Founder, Transparency Task Force; Governor, Pensions Policy Institute; Chair, Secretariat Committee, APPG on Pension Scams; Chair, Secretariat Committee, APPG on Personal Banking and Fairer Financial Services; Chair of the Violation Tracker UK Advisory Board
Presentation #1, for 15 minutes + 5 minutes Q&A/Discussion by
Elder Abuse Expert Witness & Teacher/Consultant
Presentation #2, for 10 minutes + 5 minutes Q&A/Discussion by
Presentation #3, for 10 minutes + 5 minutes Q&A/Discussion by
Fraud Investigator, 4Keys International
Sebastian Elwell FPFD TEP
Director, My Switchfoot Team Limited
The “Just a minute”-round
Inspired by the BBC Radio 4 programme, we have asked a selection of our attendees to spend just a minute sharing their thoughts on what has been covered during the symposium. But unlike the Radio 4 programme our speakers won’t be penalised for hesitation, repetition or deviation!
General discussion and debate, 25 minutes
Final conclusions; and suggested next steps and close to the formal proceedings.
However, for those that want it…
8:00pm BST until 108:30pm BST
….informal, unstructured networking and informal conversation; a “fireside chat”
*The programme will continuously evolve so is subject to change.