Cash Handling including the use of safes

In some circumstances Housing 21 employees may be required to support a resident with day-to-day cash handling, for example where a resident is unable to understand the value of notes and coins. This support should only be implemented as a last resort and should be agreed by the Housing and Care Manager (HCM)/Care Manager after considering all possible alternatives.

Any money must be kept securely within the resident’s apartment within a safe, and it is the responsibility of the resident to provide or purchase the safe. The money must not be kept within the court safe or within any of the scheme offices.

Only Housing 21 employees may have access to the safe and access should be limited to Assistant Court Managers (ACM’s) and HCM’s/CM’s.

A Resident Cash Handling Record must be kept within the safe at all times and completed whenever money is deposited within the safe by employees or money taken out to give to the resident and must be accompanied by two employee signatures, one of which should be the ACM or HCM/CM who accessed the safe.

If family members bring in money for a resident, this must be given to the care office where a receipt must be provided to the family member. An ACM or HCM/CM is then responsible for depositing the money into the resident’s safe, recording it on the resident cash handling record and attaching a copy of the receipt. Family members must not have access to the safe to safeguard our employees.

Where a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) for property and financial affairs asks to see the records for the safe, this can be made available by providing them with a copy of the resident cash handling record.

If a resident lacks the capacity to consent to their money being kept in a locked safe, please refer to the Mental Capacity Act Policy.

Money kept within the safe must be limited to £500. When ACM’s or HCM/CM are accepting a deposit from a relative or friend they must check that the deposit would not take the total amount above the threshold. Any insurance claims will be dealt with through the resident’s content insurance.

Access to and use of Bank Cards and Personal Identification Numbers (PIN)

Residents must be supported to remain independent when managing their bank account, if a resident may struggle to remember a PIN, they can be supported to change their account over to one which allows withdrawal in person using a bank book, signature and identification.

Where employees escort residents to withdraw money from a bank, ATM/cash machine or post office using a debit card and PIN, this transaction must be carried out only by the resident.

In the event that a resident is unable to understand the process of managing their bank account or withdrawing money, and they do not have a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) for property and financial affairs in place, please refer to the Mental Capacity Act Policy. See also 6.0 - Other Support Available.

Employees must never use a resident’s debit or credit card and PIN number to make purchases, withdraw cash or collect pension monies.

It is accepted that support in the use of a PIN may be required in exceptional circumstances, but this should be avoided wherever possible. Support in the use of a PIN may be authorised, if not doing so, would leave the resident in serious financial hardship and unable to purchase necessities i.e., food.

Authorisation and Use of PIN Process

Only once all other options have been exhausted i.e., support from family, food banks, food provision from restaurant on site, safeguarding raised with the Local Authority (LA), can authorisation be sought from the regional Head of Extra Care.

Evidence of the actions taken to date and steps put in place to mitigate any risk must be provided to the Head of Extra Care for consideration and authorisation.

Where granted, authorisation is for one withdrawal of money only, until the LA or Department for Work and Pensions can put in place more permanent measures. The LA must be notified of the intention of the withdrawal as part of safeguarding procedures.

The withdrawal must take place with the resident present wherever possible, and two employees present, one of whom must be the registered manager of the service.

A mini statement must be obtained before and after the withdrawal, and kept alongside a receipt for the withdrawal, copies of each should be kept on the resident’s file.

Following the withdrawal any records of the PIN must be destroyed.

Under no circumstances should the PIN be shared with any other employees.

Once the withdrawal has been made the residents PIN must be changed in order to protect both the resident and employees, so that no employees have access to the new PIN.

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