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Standing Committee on Health and Ageing
Dementia: early diagnosis and intervention

BROWN, Ms Eve, Senior Policy Manager, Trustees, Financial Services Council

ELLIS, Mr Ross William, Trustee Services Consultant, Financial Services Council

WHITEHEAD, Mr Peter, Senior Manager, Fiduciary and Legal, Perpetual Private

Committee met at 10:20

CHAIR ( Mr S Georganas ): Good morning and welcome. I declare this public hearing for the inquiry into dementia early diagnosis and intervention open. Australia's population is ageing and with it have come increased rates of dementia in the community. Nationally, it has been predicted that the prevalence of dementia will triple by 2050, making it a significant public health issue. The committee's inquiry intends to focus on how early diagnosis and intervention can play a role in improving quality of life, social and community engagement, and future planning for people with dementia and also their families.

I take this opportunity to thank you all for making yourselves available today to speak with the committee. A couple of other committee members will join us later. Apparently they are running a bit late. I call the first witnesses. Although the committee does not require you to speak under oath, you should understand that these hearings are formal proceedings of the Commonwealth parliament. Giving false or misleading evidence is a serious matter and may be regarded as a contempt of parliament. Would you care to add anything about the capacity in which you appear?

Mr Ellis : I am the former executive director of the Trustee Corporations Association, which has now merged with the FSC.

Mr Whitehead : I am a board member of the FSC trustee committee.

CHAIR: I invite you to make a brief introductory statement and then we will open up for a question and answer session—very informal—and maybe a discussion, depending on where your introductory remarks take us.

Mr Ellis : We appreciate the opportunity to give evidence to the committee. As noted in our submission, our focus is on the issue of helping people with early dementia and their carers plan for their futures in respect of their financial and legal affairs. By way of background, in March this year the 16 members of the Trustee Corporations Association, comprising all of the eight public trustees and eight privately owned trustee companies, which in total represent the great bulk of the industry, became members of the Financial Services Council. The TCA will be dissolved in the near future.

Trustee corporations have been providing wealth management services for more than 125 years. In May 2010 the private trustee companies became subject to Commonwealth licensing and regulation, with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission being the new national regulator for those companies. Our traditional services that trustee corporations offer include estate planning, wills, administration of deceased estates, acting as trustee for personal trusts and charitable trusts, powers of attorney and financial management orders. In terms of the services that are particularly relevant to the committee's inquiry, we would note that, on a national basis, each year the FSC's trustee corporation members prepare about 55,000 wills. They also prepare several thousand powers of attorney for clients, and some of those instruments sit in the drawer to be activated at a later stage if the person loses capacity, while some are activated upon execution. At the moment our members manage about $5 billion worth of assets for about 7,000 clients under active powers of attorney.

Just briefly to highlight some of the issues that we see in this area, we feel that careful planning can enable people to exercise choice and make effective provision for their financial future if the onset of dementia occurs. Importantly, it can provide protection from the incidence of elder financial abuse. Also, loss of capacity can be a gradual process, and effective planning can ensure a smooth transition from assisted or supported decision making to substitute decision making. Also, people are now living longer, even with diminishing capacity, and the safety net of supported or substitute decision making could be required for many years in some cases. In many cases the assets that are to be managed for those people are likely to be much more complex than they were in the past. We see it as important to ensure that a diagnosis of early dementia provides a catalyst for people to seek appropriate advice and solutions, in order to get their house in order before their capacity deteriorates to the extent that they cannot make their own choices. There is one example: medical practitioners should be appropriately equipped with relevant material to give to their patients in those situations. We would be happy to take questions, thank you.

CHAIR: Excellent. Just on that last point, where a particular person is diagnosed, we would of course encourage them to seek advice on their financial matters or all their matters—because, as you said, when they deteriorate then those decisions become more complicated. Would you be able to walk us through a scenario where there have been difficulties when someone has not sought that advice and has not put their affairs in order, and then their position deteriorates. Perhaps you could walk us through a particular example of what takes place, what happens, what the issues are, and what the complications become.

Mr Whitehead : I will give you an example. A person who has been diagnosed with early dementia does not take that action very quickly. They go and see someone for advice, but may procrastinate, for instance, or they may not have the support of family. They may be isolated, for instance. They do not actually get a catalyst to take it much further. They often do not understand the implications themselves by this stage, because they are confused and they are concerned about their own wellbeing as to whom is going to be involved. Some people may not even have an automatic choice to pick as their attorney, so as a result they are a bit confused as to the options they may have. So if they have not set that up—and it may also be finalising their will—obviously they will deteriorate. Someone will then have to make decisions for them because they were maybe needing alternative accommodation or alternative care. Generally they will probably be assessed by an Aged Care Assessment Team, and there will be a catalyst then to make an application to one of the many guardianship tribunals that exist in Australia. A decision will be made as to who will be their appropriate financial manager or guardian, and then they will be appointed to make those decisions. So it is a situation where you compare controlling it yourself by making an effective attorney and guardian appointment in advance of that happening, and the delay that will occur and the risk to their assets and their vulnerability. If they have not got someone to step in immediately, they need that service from those people. The tribunals can expedite hearings, of course, but generally there is a delay of possibly up to three months in some cases before they will be heard. During that time, it could be quite important for those decisions to be made. Whenever I have needed to expedite hearings, I have had those hearings expedited because of major financial decisions that need to be made.

CHAIR: Would you like to give an example?

Mr Whitehead : If, for instance, they really had to get out of their home into alternative accommodation and there was a suitable option made. Often alternative accommodation providers will give people a period of time to get their house in order and not force them into signing documents straightaway. They will see that there is a need. But, in most cases, there is quite formal documentation to enter into and bonds and things like that to be paid. If you have not got that planned in advance, you are caught up by the delay in having someone appointed to make those decisions for you.

CHAIR: When you have had to step in pretty quickly and make that decision, I would say there would have been many situations where perhaps family members and others may be in disagreement with your decision. What happens at that point?

Mr Whitehead : It is very interesting. A lot of people will appoint our members as attorney for that reason, because they might have people in their family that may not be experienced in dealing with these types of decisions. Also, they may feel that there will be a division of opinion and that they may get caught up in procrastination on that type of decision because of that division. When we see a client, we will actually talk about those things and the decisions that we will have to be making in the future. So it is important to know we are prepared to say: 'Right, what is their preference in terms of selling their home? What is their preference on the type of facility they are able to go into? What is their financial position? What can they afford?' Those types of decisions and conversations early can then make it much easier for the person. They know that they have spoken to you about it before, and they are not confused about what they want to do.

CHAIR: Mr Ellis, you talked about 'seeking advice and getting the right information' and that perhaps the GP could be that point of contact. What is the best way of getting that advice out to people at that point, letting them know that it is a serious decision that should be taken earlier rather than later? What would be the best avenue to get that through to people? Do we have a system in place that actually does that, whether it be the medical profession, governments, et cetera?

Mr Ellis : I do not think we have a complete system. That is part of the problem. One good example in New South Wales is a group called the Planning for Later Life forum, which we have been involved in, along with groups for Alzheimer's and the Guardianship Tribunal and the department of health. That brings together people that have an interest in ageing issues, including dementia. It shares information, and one of its major initiatives recently has been to develop a website that brings all that information together in an easily accessible form. That is the website that we mentioned in our submission. That took several months to develop, with the assistance of the University of Western Sydney. It targets not just clients who might want to look at information on: 'How do I do my will? How do I do a power of attorney or an enduring guardianship?' It also targets the medical profession, to say: 'You should be aware of this. If you have patients that you feel are losing their capacity, it would be very helpful to direct them to this sort of information so that they themselves can make those choices,' rather than, as Peter says, their procrastinating, not knowing what to do and finding themselves down the track having lost capacity and someone else having to make the decisions for them.

Mr LYONS: In regard to policy, Ms Brown, what do you do with the policy you develop? Where do you take that? Do you bring it to government? Do you just take it out to the general industry? Did you say that your area was policy?

Ms Brown : Yes, policy for trustee companies and public trustees. Obviously we represent the industry, or the great bulk of the industry of private trustee companies and public trustees, whose main work involves traditional trustee company services, including wills and powers of attorney and planning for later life. That is the policy agenda. We represent that agenda to Treasury and to government generally, and try to influence the way laws are developed.

Mr LYONS: Does it work?

Ms Brown : Yes, it does work sometimes.

Mr Whitehead : Often there are requests for comments on proposals to change the law in this area or to develop policy. We often provide submissions to government. For instance, we made comments on the recent review of the guardianship law in Victoria. It was a major review that will probably set a benchmark across the country once the recommendations are starting to be implemented. So, we are making comments all the time on that type of impact on future policy.

Mr IRONS: If the experiences you come across are related to dementia situations would you use that to show that a policy change was needed because a particular case had shown that there was a crack in the footpath?

Mr Whitehead : Or the research would show that there is an increasing incidence of, say, financial abuse, or there are more cases coming before the tribunals to review the operation of supported or substitute decision making.

Mr LYONS: Is your advice—and how we get it out to the public is another thing—that you make early arrangements for a will and a power of attorney, even if it is not registered, and that it is left sitting with you guys so that it can be brought on at any time?

Mr Ellis : Yes.

Mr LYONS: Are they the only two things?

Mr Ellis : As far as concerns our focus on the financial side of things for people with early dementia. But more generally our industry recommends that people attend to their will sooner rather than later. A lot of people clearly will not think about a power of attorney or a guardianship order until they are somewhat older. The message we try to get out in various ways is that people should think about these things. They can exercise their own choice as to whom they want to look after their affairs, and which affairs. It is a matter of getting the message around. The New South Wales Trustee and Guardian still has their goodwill week, I believe. There are a number of functions that promote the matter and get it in people's minds that they should get their will done. It is the same with the power of attorney. It can be prepared and executed but it does not have to come into effect until the person loses capacity. Some people decide: 'I still have capacity but I want my attorney to handle certain affairs. I will still be informed about what is going on.' Other people may say, 'Right, I have it prepared and it is there in the drawer. If that situation develops my wishes are clearly expressed in a legal document.'

Mr LYONS: What is your advice as to where you leave the power of attorney document? We have had evidence before the committee of early-onset dementia. Are you saying that you leave the power of attorney until a bit later? But there may be cases where you also need to do that early?

Mr Ellis : Perhaps I could suggest that the conversations do not often occur within families as to who has been appointed and where to go when you notice that you are not as effective as you were before. So, it is a very important conversation to understand what arrangements have been made and put in place. What you are saying is that there would be immediate action and certainty around who has the power to do it.

Mr LYONS: You would have to know where the document is. When I say to put it in the drawer, I do not mean to hide it.

Mr Whitehead : Generally we will hold those documents on behalf of our clients. They will have copies and they will talk to their family about it. We will notice when dealing with clients that they are not as confident about their decision making. That does not mean they are losing their capacity. But then you start to have more involved and more frequent discussions with them to ensure you are stepping in as their substitute decision maker when it is necessary. It brings forward that question of capacity assessment and making sure you doing that correctly so that you are not stepping in too early, but you are there to hold the hand through that period until they have totally lost their capacity. We are talking about dementia, and it can come quite quickly or gradually.

Mr IRONS: On that issue, you said that it can come quite quickly. Is there a point at which you have to say, 'This is where we step in.' That is one of the things we are trying to define: at what point do you move in.

Mr Whitehead : You can observe erratic behaviour or inconsistent instructions which may have a financial impact or which may not be what they would consider to be a fortuitous impact. So you might have to then upgrade your assessment capacity, just to make sure you are stepping in at the right time. The observation is the best way to start, and then you start to talk to the clients and ask them more detailed questions around what they are planning to do. We worked on a very good capacity assessment tool in New South Wales within the Attorney-General's Department, which is also available on the web. It provides a framework for the type of questions you ask around financial management to get to the bottom of whether they are actually understanding the nature of the decisions they would normally have been making.

Mr WYATT: You said you deal with 50,000 wills.

Mr Ellis : We prepare about 50,000 each year, yes.

Mr WYATT: For New South Wales?

Mr Ellis : No, that is national.

Mr WYATT: How do you cater for culturally and linguistically diverse groups, groups that are in low socioeconomic situations, the intellectually impaired and those whose educational capacity does not give them reasoned thinking to access services such as the ones you provide?

Mr Whitehead : Across the broad network there, fortunately we represent both the public trustees and the private companies, so there is a full scale of services provided irrespective of wealth across our members. That is an important note. A lot of the public trustees will have no charge or a minimal charge for making those documents. So it is quite accessible. The publicity campaigns that people provide around the need for this sometimes are not as extensive as we would want. When we were making representations to the report on older people and the law, which we referred to in our submission, a number of those recommendations came around an education program so that people are aware. Picking up on people who are not aware that it is a need that they may have is really quite difficult. Some people are isolated as well and they do not have a connection with community or legal advice. But there are a lot more community forums and discussions and during particular times of the year—Seniors Week and things like that—people are focusing on elder issues. They are frequently dealt with through lawyers giving talks to community groups around these issues. So there is not a coordinated campaign across Australia that would focus people's attention on this, and there is probably not the reach that you are talking about into some of the disadvantaged areas; however, as I said earlier, if people do lose their capacity and they have got assets that need managing or decisions that need to be made about their personal health and lifestyle, the tribunals are able to fill that gap by someone approaching them in their interest to see that those decisions are able to be made by somebody else.

Mr WYATT: I know there is a focus on elders week. How do we deal with rural, regional and remote Australia in making sure that information is accessible to regional Australia?

Mr Whitehead : I think the developments in web based access is probably the only thing we can point to. There are still in a lot of regional areas quite active lawyers and community groups who are providing this type of service. I know the Public Trustee network have a large regional network as well, where they have got access to a greater reach than probably the private trustee companies.

Mr WYATT: I want to come to another issue and that is, I had a will done recently—I just upgraded it—and it is a substantial amount of money that a lawyer charges for that service. What does Legal Aid provide in that respect or services of a similar ilk funded by Commonwealth or philanthropic agencies—are you aware of that?

Mr Whitehead : In New South Wales the Legal Aid Commission set up a particular pilot program for accessing advice about wills for people who qualify for the Legal Aid program. That was linked in quite successfully and funded through the New South Wales government. I cannot really comment on other states, but that worked out to be quite a good initiative, focusing on both wills and the powers of attorney when they do not have the resources themselves. So there was a program where solicitors can volunteer to be part of that program and provide that service without the full funding required from the client.

Mr WYATT: Given that we have got somewhere around 125,000 people across the nation with the onset of dementia—and the number is possibly higher because of the under-diagnosis of that—based on the 55,000, it is still an incredible gap.

Mr Whitehead : That 55,000 that we see are people who have chosen our organisations to be their executor or to be part of their estate planning solution, whether it is a power of attorney or other trust and guardianship documents that we can provide for them.

Mr Ellis : The law societies might have some data on the number of wills written by their members.

Mr Whitehead : In my previous role as the New South Wales Public Trustee, we did of research around the incidents of wills through different stages of people's lives. We were pleased that at the older end of life the percentages were quite high. Generally, up to nearly 80 per cent of people would have had a will by then. I think that is a fairly effective result of people being aware through the need to carefully plan ahead.

CHAIR: One question that I have is about—we just touched on it briefly—financial abuse of people, and a whole of things. What is your role in that area in terms of identifying it? You would be right in the thick of the whole person's situation. Would you like to walk us through some of those scenarios of what takes place and how you make those judgments of what is financial abuse and what is the correct thing for that person.

Mr Whitehead : The basis of your obligation is a fiduciary obligation to act in a person's best interest. When we are appointed, that is our benchmark for how we operate in the industry. Occasionally, you will find that people may have revoked the instrument that you have been appointed under.

CHAIR: When you say people have revoked, who are those people?

Mr Whitehead : Our client may have revoked their power of attorney, for instance, and appointed a family member. Then we get contacted by another family member who will say, 'How did that happen? Do you know that this is now happening? The property is being sold and we are really concerned about mum's best interests.' If that occurs, we are able to, or a family member is able to, then refer that matter to a guardianship tribunal, who generally has jurisdiction to review the operation of a power of attorney. If there is evidence of abuse, then that can mean they can make an order to suspend that power and appoint a financial manager for that person. There are a wide number of cases that are reported now in this area.

CHAIR: We would see many in our electorate offices. I do.

Mr Whitehead : The only other area where we do get involved is if someone starts to step in to communicate with us instead of our client. They are saying, 'I am the son' or 'I am the daughter.' We always have to make sure that they still have got the authority to deal with this. If a person has lost capacity, that will mean we will probably activate our power of attorney and still involve the family in terms of discussions, but we would be the one who makes the decision—not them—in respect of those property or investment matters.

CHAIR: When you take over a client's affairs, for someone who has lost the capacity to make those decisions, and you discover that there have been, or are, irregularities in their financial affairs prior to you taking over—and you would be pretty privy to all of that, I suspect—what course of action do you take? Do you take a course of action?

Mr Whitehead : It would depend on the prospects of success and the type of evidence that you have. There are often allegations of abuse that can be also counted by the assertion that 'Mum or Dad made a gift to me.' Litigation is expensive. In my history in the area, we have successfully gone to court to recover assets that have been wrongfully dealt with by an attorney. Often, unfortunately, you do not find that out until a person has died, and then you are the executor trying to bring in the assets and the family is saying, 'What happened to this property?' or 'What happened to this asset?' On investigation, provided you have got the evidence to bring the action, you will. Sometimes you cannot because the horse has bolted and there are little funds to support that type of litigation. It is better to be preventative around that and make sure that the person you are appointing—and this is the message we often give—is a trustworthy person who is actually going to look after your best interests and not their own.

Mr WYATT: One message I am picking up from you is that we really need to develop fairly comprehensive public awareness of what people should be thinking about at a younger age in terms of wills and the possible on-set of dementia and what is required around that.

Mr Whitehead : Yes, and the consequences. Once people understand the consequences—and even though there is a fallback position as I have explained with the tribunals—we will find that, in the complex areas that we operate in with superannuation—and most people have exposure to the market in shares and investments and property—sometimes these decisions need to be fairly prompt, and the consequences of not having anyone in place to make a correct decision in that regard is quite important for people to understand.

CHAIR: Are there any recommendations that you might make as to financial abuse? Would you suggest that there might be something put in place so that, where there is perceived financial abuse, you can freeze the assets of the person who is perceived to be doing that abuse?

Mr Whitehead : In fact you can do that in an urgent situation. There have been cases where people have gone before the court to get an urgent order that the attorney can no longer act pending further investigation.

CHAIR: There are caveats you can put on property.

Mr Whitehead : And caveats on properties. In that sense you are heading down a path where you have assets valuable enough to take that more expensive approach. For other people it is still that referral to the tribunal and getting an expedited hearing to ensure that it is reviewed as soon as possible before the consequences become dire.

CHAIR: So you think the legal steps are already in place?

Mr Whitehead : They are in place. It is just a question of saying: how do you get people in that situation to be brave enough to take the steps? If people are suspecting abuse, sometimes they are highly dependent on the abuser and the consequences can be quite dire for them from losing that connection. The cases that we have reviewed consistently show that often it is the closer people that are doing incredible work for their family members in support but have suddenly got a bit more generous about their accelerated inheritance and are using the funds in the lifetime rather than waiting until their parent has died.

CHAIR: Yes—'I am looking after Mum, so I need a new Mercedes because that helps Mum.'

Mr Whitehead : Or, 'Mum does not really need this money anymore because she is quite comfortable and it is just sitting there.' But Mum may need this extra money later on, for increased care and whatever else that cannot be foreseen.

CHAIR: It seems to me from the discussion we have had today that one of the most important things is getting your affairs in order as early on as possible, even if you have not been diagnosed with anything. But, in terms of people who have been diagnosed with dementia at those early stages, the whole idea would be for those people to get their affairs in order as quickly as possible. If you were in government, what would you implement to ensure that that actually happens or that there is enough information out there? How would you go about it? We touched on it earlier, but it seems to me that that is the most important thing: to have the information out there so that people know that these things exist and these are the hurdles that they will have to face if they do not put their affairs in order. How do we go about implementing some sort of information and publicity around that?

Mr IRONS: Just to add to that, if you went to the website and said, 'My mum's got early dementia; what do I do?' is there a button saying, 'Go this road,' or is there—

Mr Whitehead : Exactly.

CHAIR: Or, 'I have been diagnosed with early dementia; what do I do?'

Ms Brown : And have a duty on doctors to really follow up as well—not just to make the first suggestion, but to make a new appointment and to follow up at that next appointment.

CHAIR: Are you finding that doctors are giving patients that information about their financial affairs when they do diagnose them?

Mr Ellis : Some of the feedback is that they do not have time—or they say they do not have time. Maybe it is because the information has not been readily accessible or in a form that they can quickly convey to their patients.

Mr Whitehead : It is a question of saying, 'We now need to work out a proposed medical treatment. But, apart from that, when I next get together with you we will have a double appointment, if I can. I have access to this material. Can you bring someone along with you so that I can know that you will take this forward?'

CHAIR: 'Here are some steps that you should take. Let us see if you have taken those steps at the next—'

Mr Whitehead : It is very hard to regulate people's private lives and to make sure it happens, but I think the issue is, as soon as we get that as the catalyst for that next step, for it to be well accepted by the doctors not as part of their responsibility but as part of their contribution to the future management of their client, because if they have to make medical decisions in the future then they will need a guardian to help them through that. So it is in their interest to see some of it happening, but the financial has not really been part of their role before.

CHAIR: For example, doctors can say, 'It's not our responsibility to look after people's financial affairs.' But who should they refer them to at that point? Maybe there should be a referral on to—

Mr Whitehead : Clearly a lot of people have access to their family lawyer or the lawyer that has been giving them advice over various things in their lifetime. That is often who will be suggested straightaway, but our members provide these services as well, if they have a relationship with us or they would suggest us because of the complexity of the type of matters that we would be needing to handle. Certainly the four or five options are clearly available and understood by most people. It is very easy for doctors to say, 'Here's a pack, here are the choices and here's the website to actually give you further information.' There is a few good websites around like that.

CHAIR: And maybe following up at their next appointment.

Mr Whitehead : Just to make sure. I think most people who are receiving care from doctors and who have family members are accompanied by their family members in the early stages of dementia, just so they are on the same page in terms of what the future care for their family member will be.

Ms Brown : They trust the doctors. It is a good message for a doctor to give.

Mr WYATT: Something simpler than that would be a one-page fact sheet, two-sided, hung up in a doctor's survey. When you go to most doctors' surgeries, they have a rack with a whole series of pamphlets. If you had one about making a will or whatever the appropriate words would be, people might pick those up much more readily and read them while they are waiting.

Ms Brown : That is true as well. Absolutely.

Mr WYATT: Instead of a doctor giving advice, because it is quite possible too that a doctor giving advice may give advice but then another family member says, 'You've created a financial grief, so we'll litigate.'

Mr Whitehead : It is a catalyst for them to get the right advice: 'This is an issue that is going to flow on with consequences for you. Here is'—as you said—'a fact sheet that you really must take seriously and take forward.'

CHAIR: I have one more, which is more just something that I come across quite a bit in my office. It is where people have a particular habit that they have had their entire lifetime. They are diagnosed and continue on with that habit, but family members are trying to prevent them at that point, saying that they are suffering from dementia et cetera—for example, gambling. Suppose someone has been a gambler their entire life, at that point they get diagnosed with early onset dementia and they continue to participate in the activity that they have been participating in all their life, but at that point people are preventing them from doing it. At what point does it come about that you are looking out for their affairs? At what point is it basically trying to prevent someone from doing what they have done their entire life? I am just using gambling as an example. It could be a million other things.

Mr Whitehead : There are lots of others that people might continue as well. So it is what is in their best interests. If they can afford to gamble, they can afford to gamble. But if they are gambling in a way that is going to impact on their financial welfare and mean that they will not be able to provide for essential services, then in fact you might limit it or you might stop it altogether. I had a case once where the person had lost total capacity. She had always gone to the races every week and her guardians wanted that to be her outing every week, but there was concern that the amount that they wanted to gamble on her behalf was not in her best interests. There was quite a lot of tension around that. We had to say, 'No. Her financial circumstances probably can afford a considerable amount of gambling, but in fact I can't see what vicarious pleasure she is getting out of it.' I did not want to know whether I was making a moral judgment there.

CHAIR: Unless she had a sure winner somewhere.

Mr Whitehead : But the issue was that it was quite a large amount of money every week. That was something that we did not necessarily want to see continue without it being considered on review by the tribunal.

CHAIR: These are some of the difficulties, I suppose, that you face every day.

Mr Whitehead : Unwise decisions are made all the time. We are not there to stop people making unwise decisions. We are required to consider, largely, the principles of substitute decision making which are sometimes enshrined in legislation and which are to continue preferences and decisions that have been made before. But once it becomes not being in their best interests financially it becomes a harder one.

CHAIR: There not being any more questions, I thank you very much for the discussion today and your submission. I think it has been very enlightening for us to hear firsthand from people who are involved in the thick of things, especially about the financial affairs of people when they are diagnosed with dementia and the important role that you play in getting their lives in order before the deterioration of the illness. If there is anything further that we require we may be in touch with you again. If there is anything you feel you may have forgotten to say today, or something that we should have asked you that we did not and you feel that we should know, please feel free to contact us at any time. Thank you very much for your time.

Proceedings suspended from 11:00 to 11:18