As people reach old age, they become more vulnerable. Too often, they are taken advantage of. It's not only strangers, but also family members who exploit an elderly person's defenselessness. In addition, the caregivers who are trying to take care of their elderly parents often find themselves in sticky legal situations.
Here are some horror stories from the AgingCare.com message boards about the legal trouble that elderly people and their family caregivers have had:
"Dad signed his Power of Attorney over to a scam artist"
When an elder lives alone, is too trusting or doesn't have someone watching over their finances, they are easy prey for scam artists.
"My brother is stealing money from our elderly mother"
It's not only scam artists who prey on the elderly. It could be their own child.
"Mom never changed her Power of Attorney. Now she has advanced Alzheimer's and it's too late"
Families should have an honest discussion with aging parents about appointing a POA, before the elder loses the ability to make decisions.
"My mother turned me and my siblings in for abuse"
Whether it is due to dementia or spite, an elderly parent might charge a caregiver with abuse. Even if it is unfounded, the caregiver is in a heap of legal trouble.
"My siblings are suing me for taking care of our father"
When one sibling is caring for the parent full-time, siblings may accuse the caregiver of stealing money, abusing the elder, or mishandling assets.
"My siblings only care about their inheritance…not mom's well-being"
Whenever there's money involved, things can get ugly. Some siblings may be more interested in protecting their inheritance rather making sure mom or dad is getting quality care, living in a good nursing home, etc.
"My elderly mother is being taken advantage of by a younger man"
Gold diggers and opportunistic younger men and women look at an elderly person and see dollar signs, starting a relationship to scam money from them.
If you are experiencing legal issues associated with elderly parents, you are not alone. Connect with other caregivers who have similar problems, on the AgingCare.com Community.