Unable to participate in hearing

We were contacted by a customer who is dealing with an IS overpayment on behalf of their father. The overpayment dates back a few years and an appeal hearing date was received.  At the hearing the customer explained that their father’s health had deteriorated and that he was unable to participate in the hearing due to severe mental health issues. The customer explained that they have been dealing with the appeal on their father’s behalf and would be able to answer any questions.  The customer had provided authority from their father to the TS. The Tribunal adjourned and directed the customer to apply to become an appointee so that they could speak on their father’s behalf. 

The issue under appeal is deprivation of capital and due to the complexity of the case a paper hearing would not be appropriate.

The customer states they have spoken to the DWP and were advised that they could not become an appointee for an historic claim and appointeeship was refused.

The customer states that their father’s MH issues are unlikely to improve in the near future but they do not wish to apply for a POA. 

I have advised to provide proof of their father’s health issues and submit another formal appointee request.  I have also contacted our escalation contact for further comments.

I was wondering if anyone has any other advice?

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