< Back to article

What Is Durable Power of Attorney?


Question.....I have the durable Power of Attorney of both my parents. My sister has the health POA. My parents are both in poor health, and I can't get along with my sister. Mom has dementia and soon will need care. Sister is talking nursing home, and I want to take care of my mother. I will move her in with me, or live at her house to care for her. Mom confides in me more, says she does not want to go to a nursing home but will not live with my sister. When we try to talk about this with everyone present, mom will not say what she wants to my sister. I just can't figure out what to do. So does my sister have all the say with the health poa or do I have any say since I have the DPA. Please help answer my question.


I took your quote from the lawyer's letter literally and not as some pacifying statement. It would have enraged me not pacified me.

What do your other two sisters thinks of all of this? Have ya'll had a family meeting to discuss these concerns?

I think even $1,000 per month is too much. I didn't get any money for being my mother's POA.

I'm out of ideas and only left with questions.

How recently have you and your other sisters seen your mom? Is the POA sister living in your mother's house? If so why? Why is she driving your mother's care? What is her heart condition that landed her in the nursing home to begin with?

Good luck.

Medicaid application was filed 4 years and 3 months ago. She (the POA sister) is not getting $30,000 per year. That was just an amount written by the attorney to pacify us (the other sisters who began to question her). As far as we know, she is taking $1000 per month, and saving approx. $4800 per year on car payments, since she has been driving my mom's car. None of us are financially comfortable, and most of our friends have served as POA for their parents without a monthly stipend. Two sisters live near nursing home in south, two don't. I'm one of the ones far away. Should I compose a response to her lawyer, or hire one of my own to respond (which I frankly can't afford).

I think you and your sister need to go see your own lawyer.

"She has about 9 months until she is medicaid eligible."

Has the Medicaid application process started?

If so, they are going to do a five year look back and are going to ask where this $30,000 a year has gone. That's almost a 1/3 of the cost of a nursing home for one year. That is also about how much it cost per year for my mother to be in a nursing home after her long term care policy payments all came in.

Who is paying for the nursing home?

How far away are you form where your mother lives?

What do you suggest? How do we get her to stop paying herself? We hope that she is being honest, but she is not being transparent. My mom is still alive. She has about 9 months until she is medicaid eligible. Any ideas?


I don't buy it either.

Hi cmagnum,
I have 3 sisters. The oldest was assigned POA by my mom before her stroke. Second oldest asked oldest why she is taking not only $1000 each month, but in addition, also using my mom's car, thus saving herself probably $400 each month in car payments. Rather than answer the question, the oldest sister (POA) decided to have an attorney write a letter to each of us, telling us that $30,000 per year is not unreasonable for a durable power of attorney/health care surrogate. I don't buy it.


Who is paying for the nursing home? If your mom is paying for the nursing home, I don't see how she could claim your mother as a dependent on her tax return. What's bringing all of this to the surface now? What's going on?


A POA has no business paying themselves for what they do.

What do you mean by saying she's acting as POA for your mom?

Why have ya'll been waiting five years?

How much money has she been taking out?

If your mother could runs out of money and needs to go on Medicaid, this is going to be a royal mess.


My sister has been POA for my mom for years. Is there any way that I can find out if she has been claiming my mom as a dependent on her own taxes?