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Without any discussion, my oldest sister has stepped in to take care of my mom, who has developed dementia. She says that for her to have the financial POA, the rest of us siblings need to submit in writing that we forfeit/waive having any control of Mom's money. I've never heard of that before. Why would that be needed if Mom has already signed control to her? Any insights?

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Glynnie, thank you for your reply. It's good for us who have been caring for a parent for a while to know that sometimes sharing the mistakes we've made or experienced can help others. While dementia affects each of its victims differently, as well as each family and family member differently, it often seems to cause new and/or amplified family discord. Early family discussions can help mitigate discord, especially if every member becomes educated about dementia and caregiver duties and stress, and then uses that knowledge to actively participate in discussions.

I suggested a family meeting to my 7 siblings, but the four that I most needed to participate, incl. the trustee, did not even reply to my suggestion. And I'm pretty sure that 3 of those 4 did not take much time to educate themselves about dementia, care giving, legalities, facility types, etc. I hope your decision to have a family meeting has a better result than mine did. Like I said, earlier is better -- perhaps in my family's case the suggestion came too late.
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Thanks for the input! I agree that it's time for a get together.
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Glynnie, looking at this situation from your POA sister's perspective, I think she may be trying, albeit a bit awkwardly (i.e. "without any discussion"), to avoid future problems in caring for your mom. In particular, since your mom has been diagnosed with dementia, her competency to have signed a DPOA could be challenged in the future by a sibling, regardless of whether she was legally competent to do so. Yes, one can have dementia and yet still be determined to be legally competent to sign a DPOA, but it can become murky if siblings later challenge the DPOA. It may be wise for your sister to seek signed statements from siblings waiving control of your mom's finances and it could be a better alternative than her seeking guardianship and conservatorship. But that doesn't mean you have to sign exactly what she wants, and certainly not without discussion.

Without knowing you and your siblings' history, I can speculative that it's past time to remedy the "without any discussion" part, with which you opened your question. Schedule a discussion with all siblings ASAP and with the help of a third-party mediator, if necessary, to map out how your mom's care (health and financial) will be provided and, most importantly, how future decisions will be made.

If your sister intends to be your mom's primary caregiver as well as handle all of her financial affairs, she will be taking on a lot of responsibility and stress, perhaps much more than she fully realizes. The last thing she'll need are siblings challenging everything she does, especially if they haven't been much involved in providing her care.  As BarbBrooklyn suggested, having POA will not allow your sister to spend your mom's money on things that don't benefit her, or to change her will, etc. and POA authority terminates at death, so there's no effect on her estate plan.

Early on my dad's dementia journey, one of my 7 siblings took it upon herself (w.o. discussing it with me and 3 other siblings) to become my dad's immediate trustee, while being just a part-time caregiver. After a few years, the trustee asked me, as one of his part-time caregivers, to become the full-time caregiver, which I did and only then became aware of all the things that had been done "without discussion" that eventually forced me into becoming our dad's legal guardian and conservator. I think a lot of conflict could have been avoided (and money saved) if the trustee sister had had discussions with all siblings prior to her making trust and POA decisions for my dad. (Yes, he had dementia, but the trust attorney deemed him to be competent enough to sign documents.)
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Are you talking about guardianship or POA? Who is giving your sister this information?

My brother had financial POA.  None of us were asked to sign anything. POA meant that he could step in and act as mom's financial agent to do HER bidding. It did NOT allow him to divest US of any interest in mom's estate.
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This is confusing even to the little bit I know about POA, guardianship or conservatorship. I’d call MY LAWYER on Monday to make an appointment. My motto is ‘LAWYERUP’!
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