Your relative might need help to manage their finances for a number of reasons, outlined below.

  • They are suffering from dementia, or have another condition likely to affect their capacity to understand and make decisions. Our section on Dealing with memory problems gives advice on how to identify when your relative is struggling, and what steps you can take to help them.
  • They have a physical disability which makes it difficult to carry out certain tasks, such as a mobility problem which makes it difficult to visit the post office or the bank, or a dexterity problem which prevents them from writing cheques.
  • They are becoming confused or overwhelmed with all the details, and simply want a helping hand.
  • They are temporarily unable to deal with things, being ill or in hospital, for example.

Your relative might ask you for help, or you might notice that they are struggling and have to bring up the subject yourself.

The right way to do things will be determined by your relative’s health and personal circumstances. If they are still mentally capable of making decisions, things are relatively straightforward. For more information about determining mental capacity, see this advice from the Mental Health Foundation.

More information

Page last reviewed: 31 January 2015
Next review due: 31 December 2016