‘I asked the bank to block my spending. It wouldn’t’

In hospital, being treated for depression, and believing she did not have a future, Suzanne Hoddy started spending money on family and friends.

It was the 33-year-old’s second hospital admission, having experienced periods of acute mental health problems.

She was spending her savings on gifts and treats for family and friends, so her parents tried to intervene.

But her bank refused to block payments. Now, she wants the system changed.

“I was a patient in a mental health unit and they were my next of kin. I gave them all my bank details, they tried to put a stop to the payments, but the bank said it was not allowed to do it,” she said.

She said she felt that it was simply an automated decision, which took no account of the circumstances.

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Worse was to come for Suzanne. When she returned home from hospital after treatment, she discovered a court summons for non-payment of a council tax bill that she had missed while in hospital. An extra £1,000 of charges had been added to the bill.

Having spent her savings, and only receiving sick pay as income, she was forced to get a credit card to pay the bill.

Now, she wants to appoint her parents as power of attorney, so they can completely manage her money and property if she loses the mental capacity to do so.

However, she has found the process to be complex and difficult.

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