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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
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Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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A self assessment questionnaire of physical abilities to

Customer Question

A self assessment questionnaire of physical abilities to perform daily tasks, relating to local authority’s social care, requires the applicant to sign a statement ‘I declare that all information I have given in this form is to the best of my knowledge correct.’
My local authority’s Social Worker carried out this assessment, without giving me the opportunity to complete it myself (Department of Health guidelines 113155, para 84). I was never made aware what the papers were that he brought with him. He asked few questions, suggested some replies, made few notes and left.
At NO time was I made aware what these papers were, as I have never before completed such as assessment. He did not offer me to see the papers, let alone sign anything. I had no idea that I should sign them. In fact, the form could have been completed by whomever, whenever and wherever. There is no evidence that it even came to my home. I discovered a copy of the handwritten unsigned form some 16 MONTHs after the assessment date.
I have made some enquiries about the validity of unsigned assessment form. The UK’s Disability Law Service and others have confirmed that unsigned assessment is not worth the paper it is written on. It is legally faulty, unreliable and should have never been used in any decision making process where the wellbeing, quality of life of the applicant are being decided on. Yet, the Local Government Ombudsman to whom I complained, stated that a signature of an assessment form is not a legal requirement.
Who is right? I have so far been unable to find any legal references to this requirement on the internet , or comments from UK/local. Solicitors, which I could rely on or quote. It would appear that nobody knows much about this ubiquitous practice of signing forms.
Is there a law, stipulating this fact, or is it just a ubiquitous, worldwide practice, that a signature must be sought to confirm veracity of information.
Are there any exceptions to this in the UK?
I will only pay you on receipt of a credible, legally reliable link. I am not interested in ‘opinions;, which may or may not be true.
Only those who understand the above requirement should reply. Thank you
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Nicola-mod replied 2 years ago.
Hello,
I've been working hard to find a Professional to assist you with your question, but sometimes finding the right Professional can take a little longer than expected.
I wonder whether you're ok with continuing to wait for an answer. If you are, please let me know and I will continue my search. If not, feel free to let me know and I will cancel this question for you.
Thank you!
Nicola
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

:-) It would appear that we are both in the same situation. I have received a load of 'opinions', but none could be confirmed by legal fact. What is interesting is the fact that all of us have had to sign a document sometime during our lives, yet we do not know WHY we had to sign it. I understand that it does not matter what document it is, or what it contains, it is the fact that a signature asking to confirm its correctness/truth is on the document.

My search found that a signature of sorts was already required in Roman times. In the UK there was some law in 1700s regarding fraud and signatures. But could not find anything since. Very strange that no one has been able to provide a simple reason to such a ubiquitous practice..

I am not in a hurry. The accompanying sorry saga about all sorts of facts has been going on for 2 years now. So, I suggest, let's see what next week may bring....-)

regards

karl....

Expert:  Nicola-mod replied 2 years ago.
Hello,
We will continue to look for a Professional to assist you.
Thank you for your patience,
Nicola
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hi Nicola

Thanks for reply.

Just a thought: document having a 'declaration of fact' which has to be signed to render the document legally sound, appeared on my assessment. Signatures are almost universal, worldwide requirement. would your US or other colleagues come up with their legislation, should there be any(?), which I could follow up and perhaps find an equivalent?,

Expert:  Nicola-mod replied 2 years ago.
Hello,
We will continue to look for a Professional to assist you.
Thank you for your patience,
Nicola
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

I am also pursuing the same...

Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Dear Nicola

I have now received clarification from a Senior Professor who is a lecturer in law at Glasgow Uni. There is NO law, that would tell us anything about legal position of 'signatures'. The Declaration of fact clauses appearing in many forms, is there purely to protect the questioner from any future litigation, should the author decide to take action on the grounds that the information was 'incorrect'. The author's signature is just a safeguard.

So, the case has been solved, answer received from a different source.

I should thank you for your efforts, and perhaps arrange for a refund of my deposit, as no one came up with an answer to my question.

Many thanks and regards

Karl XXXXXX

Expert:  Bien-cssm replied 2 years ago.
We received your customer service inquiry, however, we are unable to respond to you because we do not have your email address. Please contact customer support at***@******.*** and provide us with your email address and a link to this question page so that we can help you.
http://www.justanswer.co.uk/question/qa-guest.aspx?TID=14401295
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