My sister, mother's Power of Attorney, decided that she is going to put our mom in a nursing home. What can we do legally, if 7 out of 13 of my mother’s children would rather take her into our home?

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My mom has dementia, its been 9 years now. I quit my job when she first became diagnosed & watched her for 2 years. I had to return to work for 2 years then after that I quit my job to care for her. My cousin then came in and took care of her but then had to move. In August of last year my father had a major heart attack while he was in the hospital my sister became my fathers power of attorney. She last year also took my mom who supposedly signed her power of attorney form ,mind you my mom does not speak, feed herself or can not write for the last 3 years. My mother never authorized my sister to be her power of attorney. My brothers & sisters for the last year had made a calendar that we all took turns on, my mother has 13 children, all living. On the 4th of July, 2011 my sister had taken my parents for the weekend on her day back she was upset because my niece who was living with my parents took the day off, she sent out a txt to all of her brothers and sisters saying I'm putting mom in a home, without having a family meeting. There are 7 of us who would take her into our homes & care for she will not give up the power of attorney to either one of us. Yesterday I went to visit my mother at nursing home. She was limp i could not get the nurses to help me wake her, it was as if she had passed it took me 45 min. to get her conscious the nurses at the home said that she was fine & they could not do anything until my sister who has POA would arrived she would not answer our calls as we tried to tell her mom possibly was dead. When sister finally arrived 45 min. later mom came to. SHe then kicked me & my other family members out and said if we step a foot on the property she would have us arrested. What can we do if she has children willing to care for her in our own homes & how can we become POA, I dont want any money to take care of my mother she can have all the money which by the way my mother does not get alot. As for my father he has been afraid of disagreeing with my sister because she has threatened him that she would put him in a home so he has now agreed to putting mom in a home. What do I do please help!!

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Danjen2, I am sorry for your frustration and heartache. I agree that you need to see an attorney. I would take a look at the Power of Attorney document and see if it is indeed for health care and if it was properly drawn up. If so the POA, (agent) is supposed to act based on the wishes of your mother. Your sister as POA should make choices and decisions based on what your mother would have wanted not on what your sister wants. This is what the attorney would focus on. Past conversations and interactions with physicians, spouse, family, and clergy may help determine your mothers wishes. It is those wishes which the POA should be protecting and advocating for. I would also suggest you revisit the POA paperwork for your father while he is competent. He can change his POA anytime he chooses and there should always be an alternate agent when the first agent is absent. Additionally he can add instructions regarding his placement, housing, pain control, or other comfort measures. Hope this is helpful.
Expert Answer
3930 helpful answers
This is a heartbreaker.
There's a lot of good advice here. A family mediator may be able to help bring some peace with all of these siblings involved. The Health Directive or Power of Attorney for Health Care is how health decisions are made. If your sister had any kind of POA "signed" after you mother couldn't write or speak, then there should have been a witness. Otherwise, you may have to get an attorney. It's so said to see families brought to this, and with you having given up so much, it’s got to be heartbreaking. Talk to a social worker at your social services office or see if there is a family mediator in the phone book. Someone like that may work, though as has been said, you may need an attorney.
Take care,
It is very simple. All of you can all challenge the power of attorney. Maybe you can tell a police officer that your sister is not to enter the nursing home either without supervision because there a court case pending against her. Take her to court and tell the judge that your sister has abused her POA privilege. Tell him that your mother can neither speak, feed or write and your sister has threatened to put your father in a nursing home if he talks. Bring the text messages she sent. That is senior/elder abuse. How can your mom give power of attorney unless your sister FORGED your moms signature to get power of attorney???. And please tell the judge about the nursing home situation where she refused to show up and the nurses refused to revive or resucitate your mom until she got there 45 minutes later. The same thing with your dad. Did you actually see him give her power of attorney? Did you ever discuss it with your father? Something is just not right here. Besides there is one person, your sister, who wants to put her in a home and SEVEN of you who would like to care for your mother and hopefully care for your dad at home. Challenge the power of attorney in court, not in private and make sure all of your sisters/brothers are there to support you. Make sure they have statements/texts of what they witnessed your sister doing as far as alienating her from you guys and saying shes going to have you all arrested. I am praying that you will win this case and probably have your sister removed from the premises and tell her not to come near your property or near your mom and dad. Your mom and dad God Bless them but they're probably in fear for their life of your sister and GOD FORBID, but who is to say that your sister didnt deliberately put something in your moms food/drink to make her limp that day. Get your parents back home with you guys and moniter them, nurse them back to health with natural foods to help their blood pressure, cholesterol, memory with B vitamins, all of that. Do it quickly and you are in my prayers.
First, let me said that I am not in anyway being harsh toward you. I just want to pass along some info that I have learned.
I have Durable POA with my mom. Right in the document it states that my rights can be revoked. Contact an attorney and try to get her rights revoked,but you will have to prove neglect of her POA duties more than "she put mom in a home without families consent," cause legally she can make decisions like that. In my Durable POA paperwork mom declared me guardian if court precedings would be filed for guardianship. Mom did that so my siblings couldn't fight me for guardianship for mom because siblings are money greedy and would throw mom in a home. I on the other hand quit my "LIFE" to help with mom so she can remain at home till the end. So you will need to get a hold of existing POA papers and check for that. In that case you might not be able to retain guardianship.
Just to add another thing: I was told by a professional(not sure if actually correct for every state)that as long as one is not deemed "incompentent" throught the COURT. They are not incompentent even though family feels differently. Until paperwork is filed and court proceedings happen to deem one incompentent. Your mother can still legally sign documents even if she doesn't understand and make a legal binding document. All she has to do is make an "X" or other marking and be witnessed and its legal. Its really up to the attorney or whomever is legalizing documents to make that moral call. So that is probably how your sis got POA done.
The Doctor can conclude that your mom is "incompentent" but again it has to be ruled through the court system. Because that is taking away your moms right for everything. So its more than just a doctor signing off on it. But don't be surprised if doctor doesn't want involved in matter. Because the doctor will have to provide detailed documentation and probably have to go to court to defend his decision. I was having problems with my sibling stealing my mom blind and I talked to her doctors about her mental status and they all refused to get involved.
I hope some of this info helps. I wish I had my siblings wanting to help with my mom. Your sister needs to realize that she has the support. There are lots of caregivers out there who WISH they had help from family.
Everything will work out, just stick together, and stand your ground.
anguished, once he left the state with her, why did you not report this to the police? Sure looks like kidnapping to me...
rockinronnie, she certainly does not have a right to see the will. That is preposterous.

She has a right to try to contact your mother. Your mother has the right to refuse contact.

In some states the POA document must be registered. I assumed she'd have a right to view it in those states.

What does she want a lawyer to do for her? Make her mother talk to her on the phone? Force you to violate your mother's rights to privacy? By all means, encourage her to get a lawyer. Let her pay to hear a professional tell her what her "rights" are. They do not include harassing you.

I hate when I read these, get upset and then see its 2011, ridiculous to keep them on here without going thru archives to get them.
I feel so bad reading this, you're poor Mom must have been over medicated as a lot of nursing homes do. She could be indeep depression also as they go downhill fast in nursing homes I have heard . My moms Dr just told me the stress of them is what gets them if they are not happy there. Even with dementia, they sense and know whats going on. I think if you have more than one sibling on your side that you can all overpower your sister. You can apply for guardianship also and the courts decide but that a lot of money and time, which you dont have by the sounds of it. Demand the healthcare proxy and get to a laywer right away. This has to be done ASAP thou before its too late for your poor Mom. Best of luck to you.
Anguished, let your brother see how difficult it is to duplicate a nursing home within his own home. If your Mom is thriving at your brother's home, then just sit back and watch. I wouldn't be surprised that before you know it, your brother will realize that Mom needs more care then he [or his spouse/sig other] can provide.
Tell her to get a lawyer, its a bluff, unless she is rich!!

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