Household vying for energy of lawyer for a cherished one with Alzheimer’s illness – Montreal

A family on the West Island is raising the alarm about difficulties obtaining authorization for relatives with Alzheimer’s disease.

Dollard-des-Ormeaux residents, Betty MacDonald and Robert MacDonald, have been married for 53 years. Betty began developing dementia five years ago and was relocated to the Grace Dart Extended Care home in east Montreal, about 25 miles from the couple’s home, in August 2019. She now has advanced Alzheimer’s disease and cannot take care of herself.

Robert is a cancer survivor with limited mobility and can rarely visit him. He has not seen his beloved wife since COVID-19.

Robert’s niece and other family members helped organize the couple’s finances when Betty moved into the care facility. She can no longer manage her affairs.

But when Robert tried to change her address for her retirement and retirement benefits, he ran into one stumbling block after another.

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“Some of his benefits were changed because he no longer lives with her,” said his niece, Rebecca MacDonald. “Your Canada Revenue (Agency) file was frozen for a while and it affected the benefits it received. Some of this was messed up by their move. “

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And without a power of attorney, the family has difficulty accessing Betty’s files.

“We understand the point is to protect people from fraud, but in situations like this there has to be better practice,” said Rebecca MacDonald. “It shouldn’t be that complicated because my aunt and uncle aren’t the only Canadians to whom this has happened.”

MacDonald said the process of declaring someone incapacitated is complex. Doctors must assess a person’s mental health and then the report must go to the Quebec court and a judge must sign it.

MacDonald signed with a legal aid attorney in January, and the attorney sent a legal letter to Grace Dart Nursing Home on February 5, asking doctors there to assess Betty’s mental health. But she says nothing has happened since then.

“Nothing has been done since February, so it hasn’t moved at all,” said Rebecca MacDonald. “The file is stuck, even though my uncle did exactly what he was supposed to do for his wife.”

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The family is also concerned about the care Betty receives at home. They worry that the carers who look after them are monolingual Francophones and that she only speaks English.

“She is not being properly cared for. They lost their glasses and they lost their teeth. You don’t know anything about her, ”said MacDonald.

MacDonald says her uncle struggled to visit Betty because of COVID-19. Only one person is allowed into a nursing home now and Robert needs assistance due to the disabilities he suffers from. He would like to visit his wife this weekend because it is her birthday, but he is not sure if he can visit her.

“She has bad dementia; she can’t remember anything. She probably forgot what I look like, ”said Robert MacDonald.

The CIUSS West health department responsible for Grace Dart did not respond to Global News’ requests for an interview in a timely manner.

The CRA said it couldn’t reply until next week.

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