The reason why I decided to create this discussion thread is to alert others what many issues may arise after becoming a POA for the elderly. As the old saying goes,"It's best to talk to someone that's been there and done it."
I like to call this discussion thread,
(The do's and don'ts of a POA for dummies in plain English).
POA is also known as a Attorney In Fact. To understand, the do's and don'ts of a POA requires one to become an attorney to know the laws & rights of a POA. In this discussion I will discribe the aging parent or aging relative as the "Client."
Usually in most cases it's the "Client" that appoints with trust a POA. POAs Valitears, agrees to accept to be a POA. There is many types of POAs depending on the "Client's" issues. I will talk about DPOA. (Durable Power of Attorney) for Healthcare & finance institutes. Some POAs are Springing (When incompetent) and some take effect immediately upon the client's signature.
Let's begin,
What is a living will declaration? Directs the medical treatment you are to receive in the event you are in a terminal. Some people think that a POA is for this reason. But, if the client has a living will declaration in place with their doctor there is no need for a POA. The living will declaration is in place!
The Client has every right to appoint anyone they trust to be their representative and to record this with their healthcare providers. As long as the client is compatent. A POA is not needed to appoint a representative. The client can do this on their own without a POA. The main factor in this is, (Is the client competent or incompetent)That is the number one factor in play.
Some think that a POA is needed in order to be a Healthcare representative for thier client. No it's not needed as long as the client is competent, filed a living will declaration, appointed a person with trust as their representative and recorded this information to their healthcare providers. It's best to have everything in writing, witnessed and notarised. Doing all of this above, a POA is not needed for Healthcare.
POA over financial,
A POA is not needed for financial purposes if the client has their representative named on their assets as "Joint". But, named "Joint" may cause issues down the road. Because your assets may become your client's assets if Medicaid gets involved. As Medicaid goes back five yrs.

Many issues come into play after becoming a POA that most have not a clue.
POAs are not allowed to be "Joint"on a bank account with the client. Not allowed to accept a gift or gift, Donate, Transfer funds, Charge for services or borrow.

Many say that a POA isn't a job. I would differ that and say Yes it is. Requires,your out of pocket spending and your time as a accountant & recorder. When you agree to be a POA. You're accepting to do this job for free without any reinburement of pocket cost. Be aware of this!
My statements above is what I found from being a DPOA. I'm not stating avoid being a POA. I'm just stating there's other ways of doing things other then becoming a POA for someone. Just depends on the client's issues.
I found many flaws that I wasn't aware of after becoming a DPOA. If your not a attorney.You wont know what questions to ask a attorney when creating a POA. A attorney will only do what you request. They don't read minds.
I will end this by giving advice,
Do not attempt to create a POA on your own or without a attorney. And be aware that Being a POA means "FREE OF CHARGE". No reinburement.
I found that being a DPOA stopped me from many tasks. I was also a Caregiver and a DPOA for the same relative "Client". I had two jobs to do. Caregiver and DPOA. This DPOA stopped me from being hired as my client's Caregiver. This DPOA forced me to do this Caregiver job for free of charge without any reinbursement. I was told that because, I'm my client's DPOA. I can't charge for services or accept payments for my services.This means I can't be hired, paid to be my client's caregiver. For me this is unfare. I was Caregiver before this DPOA. I feel that being a Caregiver isn't the same service as POA services.
Has anyone else ran into issues being a POA for someone? Because, I sure ran into many issues with this DPOA I have. Another issue I ran into was, Chase Bank doesn't allow POAs to have access to online banking. This is a issue for me as a POA. I wanted to setup online banking so I can manage my clients accounts and setup auto bill pay and check balunce online.
I ask, has anyone else ran into issues as a POA? Are you a POA and Joint on your Client's bank account? I read and see so many that are in fact joint. I like to know how you all get away with being "Joint"?
I have more issues about this DPOA but, not enough room on this page to keep explaining. Sometimes I feel that the meaning of a POA is only for finger pointing if issues arrise.
Anyone esle have issues with their POA?
Thanks !

This discussion has been closed for comment. Start a New Discussion.
Texas - Yes sibling claims she has durable power of attorney. when she manipulated aging mother with wrote hot checks on mother's electric account and water been suspended due to returned checks

Sorry, I meant to say people are Not sneaking around trying to get away with something.

Dogabone you could drive anyone crazy with your confusion. Debralee is correct. If course if your aunt wanted you to be joint on her account she could have done that. She didn't. Instead she gave you DPOA. You just have never understood what that means. The three points you copied in your last post are correct. Keeping you off of her accounts as an owner makes good sense to me. That way your finances and hers stay separate, as they should be. You keep going on and on with various posts about your problems with this DPOA. It's been suggested to you before that you give this up because it is too much for you to deal with. People are sneaking around getting joint on accounts and getting away with something as you seem to suggest. If you can't settle this and get legal advice you trust, quit obsessing on this online. Do what you want.

Debralee,thanks for rephrasing that for me.
Here is what I find online about issues being joint & POA,
1.If the agent has creditors or becomes subject to a judgment, those creditors could attach to the principle's bank account if that agent is listed as a joint owner on the account.
2.The bank account is considered 100% principle's and 100% the agent's; therefore, the agent would be allowed to withdraw funds whenever he or she desires and for whatever purpose.
3.Upon death, the funds in the bank account pass outside of probate to the agent listed on the bank account. The agent is not legally obligated to distribute those funds in accordance with the terms of the principle's Will or in accordance with the laws of intestate succession.
You explained to me that POAs"Agent's" are allowed to be Joint on the principle's bank accounts.
I've talked with many attorneys and online forums about this matter.Everyone I've talked to tells me that POAs are not allowed to be Joint on the principle's bank accounts.Not allowed for many reasons as well as the three reasons stated above.Having a POA "Agent" joint on the principle's bank accounts will cause,many issues.
One issue example is,if the principle would ever need to go into a nurcing home.If that principle exceeds his/her bank account/funds.In order for that principle to stay living in the nurcing home.That principle will be required to apply for Medicaid. Medicaid goes back 5 yrs.Medicaid will look back 5 yrs of any large amounts of messing assets.This basically,means that the POA "Agent" will be the feller to come up with those messing assets.
Another example is,Let's say Mom gives you $100,000 as a gift.4 yrs later she goes into a nurcing home and exceeds her funds.Medicaid can or will reverse that gift back to the principle for healthcare expenses.This means you the Agent will need to give back that $100,000 in order for your Mom to stay living in the nurcing home.Same example if Mom gives you her home.Or sells you her home.Medicaid can reverse that sale.That's what I mean by saying that POAs is just for someone to point the finger towards.In these cases I stated above,being Joint Medicaid will point the finger at you when if the time comes.That is one of the examples why to avoid being joint.If your Mother would never need Medicaid as help with healthcare expenses.Then,I can see why you say you see no problems being joint on her accounts.Because,Medicaid will never get involved as long as your Mother never exceeds her assets/funds.In other words stay away from Medicaid and you'll be fine.
I guess my next question would be,If I the POA "Agent" is in fact Joint on the principle's bank accounts do I need to worry if the principle exceeds their funds and needs Medicaid?

When I became my Aunt's POA "Agent".The first thing I was worried about is covering my Butt.I wanted to do all of this legally by the book.So,I don't get fingers pointing my way later.Every person I talked to told me that I'm not allowed to be Joint if I'm her DPOA.Your the first person that ever told me I am aloud to be Joint.
Who's right and who's wrong on this?I hear many people are joint with their parents bank accounts and POAs.Makes me wonder who's speaking the truth on this matter?

The owner is the name or names on like a checking/savings account, credit card account, retirement accounts, etc
The principle is the person who names another person to be their DPOA agent.
Your Aunt is the principle and you are her agent.

(There is absolutely no State Statute in this country that bans a DPOA from being a joint bank account owner with the principle)
I'm understanding what you mean by this above?I'm a dummy so to speak lol.
What do you mean by owner? My Aunt is the owner of the account not me the DPOA.
Principle?Your talking funds,assets?

Thanks for your information.In deed the past three months I've been chancing my tail.When I first was appointed DPOA.The attorney told me to give copies of these papers to my Aunt's Healthcare providers and financial institutes as soon as possible before my Aunt becomes worse.I was always the type of person that thought twice about things before reacting.When the attorney told me to act as soon as possible.I didn't think twice I just reacted and did it.You must understand that I had no choice but,to be her DPOA.There was no other willing to help her but,I.If I didn't agree to be her DPOA.It would of been like throwing her to the dogs.The two past craegivers are in jail as we speak for battery towards the Aunt.They stolen many things from her and beat her up manytimes.The past caregivers wrote out many checks using her checkbook included $1000's of dollars.I thought something was wrong with my Aunt when the caregivers lived with her.I followed my gut and called APS and the police requesting a wellness check done at my Aunt's house.That's when they both was arrested for class A battery.After that no other family member wanted to help my aunt.They all was affraid of being accused and to go to jail.After they was arrested.My Aunt contacted me crying & scared she needed help.She said to me,I have knowone to help me.Will you be my POA.I couldn't turn my back on a 80 plus yr old lady.So,I agreed and we went to the attorney to have this DPOA created.The attorney knew about the past batteries the Aunt recieved from the past Caregivers.And this is why the attorney told me to act fast.Incase they attempted to go back to the Aunt to do more harm.So in a way I was forced into this DPOA.Sure I didn't have to agree.But,if I didn't agree the Aunt would have knowone to help her.Sorry for the long explaining.I thought I needed to explain how I became her DPOA.
Anyway,getting back to what I was explaining,
When the attorney told me to act soon on this DPOA I did.I went to her Chase Bank.I talked with one of the bank managers at that bank while giving my DPOA copies.After the copies was given.I asked the bank manager what does this DPOA mean?Because,I never did this stuff before.The manager told me that it basically means.You now have control of her life.You now have full access to her bank accounts.I was in the bank for a good 2 hours getting this done.I was ready to go home at that time.I asked the manager if I was able to change my Aunt's PIN number on her Debit card?Because,she has dementia and forgot her PIN.The manager told me no problem.Just go up to the front and explain this to one of the tellers.I also,explain to the manager that my Aunt is having problems remembering if she paid her bills.I told him I would like to setup online banking.So,I can go online at any time to check balunce & to setup auto bill pay so she has no worries anymore about if a bill wasn't paid.The manager told me because,I'm not Joint.The system wont let me setup online banking on my own.He told me that someone up at the front can do that for me.I said,thanks I won't do this today.I'll come back another time.So,a week later I went bank to get this stuff done at the bank.The manager wasn't their that day.I did what the manager told me in the past to do.Go up front to the tellers.I explain the teller that I want to setup online banking and change her PIN on her card.Chase bank tells me POAs are not allowed access to online banking.POAs are not allowed to have access to Debit cards.They told me the only way for me to change the PIN number or to setup online banking is to have my Aunt go do it her self.My Aunt is 80 Plus yrs old,Dementia can't remember what day it is or your name let alone a PIN number.On top of that my Aunt at 80 plus has no idea what online is.She sure couldn't remember a user's name & password.Seems the manager tells me one thing then the tellers tell me another.Can you see how this DPOA is stopping me?
If I didn't have this DPOA and was just placed on her account as joint.I wouldn't be having this problem.I tried talking to the attorney that created this DPOA.He's a jerk! He tells me I'm not his Client my Aunt is.He wants me to pay him to talk to him about all of this I'm going thru.He tells me I need Guardenship now.Sounds to extream to me.

dogabone talk to the lawyer who gave you DPOA and ask that person. There is absolutely no State Statute in this country that bans a DPOA from being a joint bank account owner with the principle. I asked that very question to my mother's lawyer who drew up the DPOA. As for Medicaid, it does not make any difference about joint bank accounts in my situation. I do not put my own money into her account nor do I write checks from her account for my own personal use. Online information can leave you trying to catch your tail. Seek legal advice from a lawyer.

There's many reasons why they don't allow POAs to be "JOINT".
The main factor is Medicaid and the 5 yr look back.I've talked with many attorneys and many online forums about this matter of being Joint & a POA.
Your the first that has told me POAs are alowed to be joint.Can you provide legal proof of claim that this you state is true?I sure like to read it?

(Also I do not co-mingle my money with my mother's money. I am on her checking account merely as a convenience)
If your Joint and not moving money.I don't see how your not co-mingling.Unless you transferred money into two accounts.As one to be your's and the other to be your parent's.
I see your point as long as Medicaid "Never" get's involved.Your actions of being joint I take it that your not thinking if/when Medicaid will be needed?
Sounds like I need to get on the same train your on lol.

It's strange that you say your POA & Joint. From what I read online as stated in the Do's & don't's of a POA. Your not allowed to be joint. And your not allowed to accept, barrow or gift. Unless noted on your POA. The only way I see that you became joint was if you was joint prior of your POA. Because, after you was appointed POA. You was not allowed to be joint unless the POA stated. I why you wasn't denied online banking if you are joint. Some how this doesn't sound right for you to be joint & POA. Unless you was Joint before the POA. The reason why your not allowed to be joint is because, your assets will become your parents assets if/when Medicaid get's involved is what I was told. This becomes a problem when your parent needs to spend down their assets to apply for Medicaid.

I was never denied by my Aunt not to be joint on her bank account. I avoided attempting to be joint because, I was told by reading the do's & don'ts of a POA your not allowed to be joint. My question to you is,"Was you JOINT before or after your POA was activated?"
Yes I hear many POAs gift.But,reading online as the do's & don'ts your not allowed to barrow,Transfer funds, gift or accept a gift.As your not allowed to gift your self or charge for services.If your doing all of this and getting away with it all?I must be reading the wrong do's & don'ts of a POA!
If would have known at the start that I was aloud to be joint while a POA I would have done so.Sounds like I need to talk with the bank?Without being Joint.It's very hard to get things done with just a DPOA in place I learned.
As you state your DPOA & JOINT.What stops you from transferring assets?POAs are not allowed to transfer assets is what I was told.I guess your'll be ok as long as your parent remain's compatent & don't need to apply for Medicaid soon.As Medicaid goes back 5 yrs and your JOINT.Your'll be the feller Medicaid will go after when they wonder where all the money went?
My Aunt's compatent as well as you stated your parent is.I'm DPOA ,Caregiver.
I'm trying to do everything by the book legally.Are you worried at all about Medicaid down the road?Sounds like I need to be Joint too lol.

Also I do not co-mingle my money with my mother's money. I am on her checking account merely as a convenience.

I have DPOA for my mother and am joint on her checking account. My mother chose for me to be joint with her. There is no law banning a DPOA from being joint account holders with the principle. A DPOA does not legally require the agent to become the caregiver to the principle. DPOA's do not get paid for the responsibilities, unless it is written into the instrument. As my mother's DPOA, I am authorized to make any financial decisions on behalf of my mother to include gifts, transfers of funds, real estate transactions, etc with my mother's consent while she is competent and when she is declared incompetent, I would make those decisions for her. The DPOA became effective immediately after my mother signing it with two additional witness signatures. This was done with her attorney at his office, not a do it yourself online process. The only thing I can determine by your past postings, is that your aunt chose not to have you joint on her checking account. A DPOA instrument does not allow you to automatically become a joint owner on the principle's bank accounts.

This discussion has been closed for comment. Start a New Discussion.
Start a Discussion
Subscribe to
Our Newsletter