Your father has been hospitalized or lives at home and is affected by a cognitive decline. The doctor has just announced that he will be declared inapt, because he can no longer take care of him or manage his daily life.
What to do? Where to start?
We are often taken aback by this kind of situation. Life becomes more difficult when we have to juggle work, children, vulnerable parents and a struggling public health system. In the face of such a difficult situation, we often feel helpless.
Here are a few steps and crucial information to know and follow to simplify your life:
Do your research
There are different kinds of regimes of protection. If your parent has been declared inapt or incapable, a legal proceeding is necessary to insure the wellbeing of your parent and their belongings.
The first step is to verify if your parent has drafted a mandate in case of incapacity either through a notarial or private deed (written at home and signed by him and two witnesses). The most effective way to find out is to call your notary who will conduct an official search with the Quebec registry of mandates to see whether a mandate in case of incapacity has been done. If so, he will be able to produce a copy of the latest version.
In the event that no mandate exists, it is unfortunately too late to produce one since your parent has been declared medically unfit to consent or sign any document. It will therefore become necessary to proceed with the opening of a protection regime. You can file your application directly with the public curator or enlist the services of a notary who can take care of the whole process for you.
The homologation of a mandate in case of incapacity
In order to have the said mandate in case of incapacity homologated, the notary will require you to provide two key documents.
The first is a medical report completed by your parent’s physician confirming his inability or incapacity.
The second is a psychosocial assessment performed by a social worker. In more urgent or pressing cases, it may be useful to know that it takes several months of waiting when dealing with the CLSC, while the private sector is able to offer almost immediate assistance.
What is and how does a psychosocial evaluation work?
The role of the social worker is to determine the level of incapacity of the adult person by checking his capacity to ensure his own protection and the management of his property.
The social worker must determine whether there is really a need to protect the elderly concerned and ensure that the person appointed is able to perform his role. Once the meetings are completed, the social worker will produce a detailed report of her psychosocial evaluation, copies of which will be given to the parent, the mandatary, as well as the notary.
Formalization of the mandate
With the help of the medical report and the psychosocial evaluation, the notary can then proceed to the official homologation of the mandate before the court’s head clerk so that the mandate can take all of its legal value.
Finding qualified professionals
If you are facing such a situation, please note that it is important to deal with qualified notaries, doctors and social workers. You can find them on the websites or the order of each profession.
The team at l’Agence d’hébergement Doré is an important resource to help you navigate through these steps. They will simplify this process by listening to you and your parents and by offering support from an experienced team.
This article was written by Mélanie Doré, President of Agence d’Hébergement Doré and graduate in social services : 514-383-5201 www.agencedore.com
Note: This article is for informative purposes only. Always check with a medical professional.