Money Management Program
Feeling a little overwhelmed with bill paying? Are you looking for some assistance organizing and paying your bills before you fall behind? Would you like information about Representative Payee services?
We can help. Think of Missoula Aging Services as a one-stop-shop to help you and your loved ones age-in-place. The new Money Management program can help you manage your bills and set up a budget that works for you.
The Missoula Aging Services Money Management Program is designed to aid older and at-risk adults who are finding it difficult to manage their personal financial affairs. The purpose of Money Management is to ensure that all your essential bills are paid so that critical service needs are met including shelter, food, clothing, and healthcare. The outcome of undeposited income checks or unpaid bills can lead to discontinued utility services, late fees, evictions, and foreclosures. Facing financial difficulties can often leave someone vulnerable to financial exploitation and elder abuse.
Staff are here to provide money management assistance, act as your financial advocate to prevent exploitation or abuse, and enhance your quality of life by providing peace of mind.
We keep this program affordable to everyone by offering it on a sliding scale.
Eligibility for Service:
- Adults 60 years and older
- Individuals who might be interested or have been referred by family or community-based service providers.
Each new potential client is interviewed to evaluate current needs. The interview will assess needs based on your income, experiences tracking finances and bill paying, physical barriers, vulnerability for abuse, and documentation of crisis that could be mitigated by financial assistance. After the assessment, our friendly staff can provide you information about additional services you may qualify for, if you wish.
Bill Payer: Bill payer staff will partner to assist with your bill-paying activities. You make the final decisions about your finances, retain check-signing authority, and keep your own bank accounts. Additional bill payer services include balancing checkbooks, maintaining financial records, and preparing financial budgets.
Paying Agent: A paying agent legally acts in place of, or on behalf of, you as your power of attorney. The Money Mangement paying agent receives clients' funds and pays monthly bills directly.
Representative Payee: As a representative payee, we partner with each client to create a budget and provide a monthly statement that shows how your money was spent and any remaining monthly account balances. Your representative payee will stay in contact with you frequently to ensure we understand your individual needs.
A representative payee is appointed by the Social Security Administration (SSA) when people who are receiving monthly Social Security or Supplemental Security Income benefits need help to manage their money. The representative payee is appointed to manage Social Security funds only. Money Management program staff must follow SSA agency rules for handling client funds, submit annual reports to SSA, and be subject to a random audit every 3 years.
Veterans Administration (VA) Fiduciary: A VA Fiduciary is appointed by the VA to receive funds on behalf of a beneficiary for the use and benefit of the beneficiary.
Debt Management: The Money Management specialist will assist you in creating a budget that allows for repayment of debt. If it is not financially possible to include debt repayment in your budget, staff may work with you in an effort to find programs to assist with your debt or help negotiate with creditors. The Money Management staff will also assist in the collection of debts or other revenues owed to you.