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I'm not even sure if I'm in the right group for this, but I can really use some advice. Very long story short is I have a friend who is 74 years old who has cancer and is showing early signs of Alzheimer's or dementia. She lives in Tennessee and I'm in New Jersey and I send her food in the mail (which gets expensive after a while) because she can't walk to the store. Currently she is on social services but most of her money goes to rent. The so call friends she has steal from her. Has anyone ever had to move someone from one state to another and get them set up in a place of their own? I don't even know where to start and unfortunately she can't live with me because I live with my mother. Any advice would be much appreciated, thank you.

Honestly, I would start with a three way call, you, your friend and her local APS. Tell them about the thieving friends and her inability to get groceries.

She needs an immediate intervention and it should be done in her home town.

Before I mailed anymore food, which you are right, it is expensive to ship stuff, I would contact meals on wheels or the local council on aging and get her set up with meal delivery from a service that provides meals to low income, physically challenged seniors. I deliver these from mobile meals and it is great food. 2 meals, 5 days weekly delivered right to the kitchen. Payment is anywhere from 5.00 to 40.00 weekly, depending on her income, it could be a free service if she qualifies.

Moving your friend close would be great for you, for a short time. You would end up drained because you would be her everything. That is not a situation that you want to be in. You would feel obligated because you helped her get there.

Does she have the money and ability to actually move? Because public assistance will not pay for or facilitate a move, this would be squarely on her and quite frankly, if she has the money to do this, why isn't she ordering her own groceries?
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Reply to Isthisrealyreal
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Are you wanting her closer so you can keep an eye on her and protect her? Go online and find Adult Protective Services in TN and tell them what’s going on. She is a vulnerable adult and that’s what they’re there for. I’m assuming she has no family around her. If she comes to NJ you will be a caregiver for two people. Even if she’s in Assisted Living you will still be concerned about her. How is your mom? Will she become worse soon? You already know your friend will be getting worse. It doesn’t sound like your friend should be living alone so being on a waiting list for HUD housing would be pointless. An apartment at an Assisted Living facility could work better since she could get assistance. AL have tiers of care that are based on assessments done before admitting the resident. I don’t know if she’ll need a doctor’s appointment for a diagnosis or not. 

I would try to get a consultation with a couple of elder law attorneys in NJ to see if this is going to turn into a huge quagmire. Will you be able to get POA? You’ll need it if you’re helping her with her affairs—probably admission to AL, doctors, etc. An investigation by the TN Adult Protective Services could lead to an evaluation by a doctor. She might not be of sound mind to sign POA papers. At that point guardianship would be the next, very expensive, step. She might be better off going to an AL facility there. 

I would also call Adult Protective Services in NJ. Explain what’s happening to her and would they have suggestions about settling her in NJ. Also contact your local Area Agency on Aging for assistance. 

Yes, I got my brother into assisted living from out of state. I live in MT and he’s in NW Indiana. When he showed signs of significant memory problems I had to contact social services to set him up for food stamps and Medicaid. I found the website and applied after I became an Authorized Representative so I could take care of all the paperwork. I think the office called him while I was on the phone to get his okay. (Would your friend be of sound enough mind to respond properly?) 

An elder law law attorney had recommended an excellent Assisted living facility that had apartments for folks on Medicaid. Some facilities accept people on Medicaid, others don’t. With my brother most of his social security went to his apartment and care at AL. Then he qualified for a Medicaid waiver that paid the balance of what the AL was willing to settle for. Don’t write AL off completely. Several hoops to jump through but definitely worth it. Shop around. A family member had to tour the place prior to admission. Ultimately I went to IN to clear his apartment out and get him into AL. I started the process here at home and finished all the paperwork, payment and moving in IN. 

Do a lot of information digging in both states and find out what you can and cannot do and what would be the best way you can help her. Go online and make phone calls. Expect to need a lot of documents and paperwork if you go forward with moving her.
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Reply to katepaints
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Hi, and God bless for wanting to do for your friend. But if you will, let's take a look at this situation from another side. You say she may be having signs of Dementia, and she's 74. As a caregiver for seniors with Alzheimer's/Dementia, I feel that what you're proposing will, in the long run, hurt more than help. You will be removing her from everything she has known, for however long - seniors with Dementia - or the beginning of - do not deal well with changes - especially a major change like you're suggesting. I truly admire your dedication to your friend, your care, and your concern. From what you write, she will quickly go downhill, and she will in no way be capable of being independent, on her own. At that time, she will most likely need a full-time caregiver. Are you prepared to give up your independence, everything you now have, to take care of your friend? The list goes on....there are resources where she is now, so why not put forth effort on her behalf, and make some calls? Help is available, for her and as her friend, for your peace of mind. You both are in my prayers. Jazzy
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Reply to Jazzy1349
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Madogazoid: Firstly, you ARE in the right place. We are a forum of longtime posters who are in active caregiving or are past caregivers and respond to inquiries such as your's. Secondly, you do not mention if your 74 year old friend has family who can assist her, but she is very fortunate to have befriended you. I am sorry to hear that the so called friends steal from her. You should start with her town in Tennessee's COA (Council on Aging), who should have on staff a dedicated elder care staff member as well as a social worker, whose jobs are to help elders in their locale. Thirdly, are you sure that your friend wants AND is physically ABLE to move to New Jersey? Perhaps she is too ill to make such a move.
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Reply to Llamalover47
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Get connected with a local social worker in your area or with an agency or organization that deals with seniors. They should be able to advise you whether it's possible for her to move to your state and to get on to social services. I would guess that states do not make this easy. If she's showing signs of dementia, she shouldn't be living on her own. It would be better for her to move to an assisted living/memory care facility. If she has cancers she may need a place that can also provide skilled nursing, when needed. Have you considered going to visit her and helping her find a senior residence to move to? They would take care of the cooking, cleaning, caregiving, etc. Find a place that can care for her if her mental state declines further. Get her on waiting lists, if there are no places currently available.
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Reply to NancyIS
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Why not start with the easy part. Contact the New Jersey department concerned with elder care services and ask them how to start. They most likely will end up communicating with Tennessee social services. Let them make the switch while you concern yourself with living accommodations, change of address, changing auto deposit of her SS funds, preparing to close her local accounts. Why do it on your own...there are people waiting to help you.
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JoAnn29 Jan 18, 2022
Sorry, I don't see any State Social Services getting involved with helping to get someone transferred from one State to another in this scenario. Especially in NJ where we are short on caseworkers. They have enough dealing with their own residents. This is not a family member. Nor does she have POA or is able to get to records needed for applications. You must be able to supply any info needed. If you can't, SS will tell you were to find it and you do the research.
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We moved my mom from a nursing home in one state to assisted living in another. The transition transition from Medicaid services in one to those in another could not begin until she actually moved, and then took several months, so much red tape. States have different guidelines and income levels. To be very helpful to her, you will need durable and medical power of attorney, which she can give to you even if she has some dementia, as long as she hasn’t been declared incompetent. If you don’t have POA, you can still help her, but she has to be with you and/or sign for every decision, every request. If you have money to tide her over while you set things up, this could be doable. Know that it will take a significant time and energy investment on your part.
Others have given you many aspects to consider. Only you know what you are capable of managing. Your friend is lucky to have you in her life, whether or not she is able to move.
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Reply to Chris52
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I moved my Mom from her senior apartment to my studio apartment in New York City. Some of her stuff in stored at my adult daughter's apartment. I only brought four suitcases of my mother's clothing. My place now looks like we are auditioning for the show "Hoarders". I've had to do everything! The social workers and their supervisors thank me for educating them. What does that tell you? And I've yet to meet one I can rely on. I've had to do all the paperwork, appeal decisions and win, on and on, and in the three years, I'm still doing paperwork. My mother wasn't a good mother and thus my siblings were all ready to dump her into a nursing home. Out of obligation, I took charge of my mother. I have to look at it positively or else I'd "go under". You will be/feel responsible for your friend. Out of my three encounters with APS, one was bad. Please don't have her go to a nursing home. Try assistant living. If possible, get referrals from friends, alz.org, and sites like these. I hope this helps.
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Reply to Sunnie23
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JoAnn29 Jan 14, 2022
Assisted living is only an option when you have money. As a friend without POA, she cannot make this type of decisions for her friend.
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It may be best to point your friend towards local professional services to help her. Starting with her Doctor. She may have a Case Manager or access to a Social Worker for social issues through her cancer treatments.

If your friend can not independently arrange her own care (with just a little support) she will need adequate support services involved. This may include legal matters, supportive decision making or more. If she is being taken advantage of, or lack insight to her situation, calling APS to report an vulnerable adult may be needed.

It is kind to want to help. But setting your friend up to live alone if they can't won't really help them in the longer term.
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Reply to Beatty
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I live in S Jersey and HUD Senior aots here take years to get. Rent is charged 30% on monthly income. For other types of rental help, HUD only has applications once a year and that is only for a few openings. Low income 55 and up are at least $700 a month unless you can get help with HUD. This past Summer my Nephew didn't even get a notification of HUD application dates. (For now the State Disabilities help him) Then there is if your friend is even entitled to our resources coming from out of state. There may be a residency requirement.

I am 72 and for the last 13 yrs have been thru the red tape of helping my nephew. Still am responsible for his yearly Medicaid recertification. I would not go thru this again. Really, what are you going to do if she gets here and there is no help to be given.

You need to call Adult Protection (APS) in her County and ask them to do a well check on a vulnerable Senior. Explain the situation. If she has no family, the State may need to step in and take over her care. They are able to get her the resources she needs faster than you can. If you do this, you will be taking on a large responsibility.
I doubt you have POA and with Dementia she cannot assign you. Without POA it will be very hard to help her. The other option is Guardianship but that is very expensive.
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Reply to JoAnn29
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I’m sorry for your friends situation. I see she is already on social services in her own state of Tennessee and her problem is she is being taken advantage of by “friends”.
You want to move her to New Jersey and have her go on social services. Does she want to move to NJ?
You could look up “Area Agency on Aging in your county, New Jersey” and see what services she might qualify for. All states or even counties within the state are not the same.

The services she receives may actually be better where she is.

For housing there is usually a wait list. It sounds like your friend already has a house. If you search online you might find what portion of the persons income is taken for housing in both states and how that compares.

Then the medical care would need to be established. IDs for the new state. Medical insurance transferred.
I assume she doesn’t drive as you mentioned walking to the store so no car to deal with. But she has found a way to appointments so transportation would need to be located in NJ.

Did you intend to become her caregiver?
Can she afford to fly to NJ?

If she is being abused where she is, you could contact the APS and ask they investigate. Again, there may be a wait.

She might be able to receive meals on wheels in her area for food. They are sometimes free if the person isn’t able to pay the very minimal charge.

Since she is already on social services in her area, she should discuss with her case worker and her doctor her situation and under what circumstances she would be eligible for a NH.
Perhaps you could call the social worker with friends permission and tell her of your concerns regarding the dementia.

I have a friend who is in the process of moving her sister from one state to the other. She has a mental condition but her circumstances are different. It has been very difficult and most of the things I asked you about haven’t been done yet for her sister. She is three months into it already. You are a good friend.
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Reply to 97yroldmom
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Well, your friend should be eligible for social service right in her home town. Your friend should schedule a consultation with her primary care physician. Your friends primary care physician should be able to perform a general physical exam to determine your friend ability to care for herself. From there, your friends primary care physician should be able to get social service involved to determine the next steps in your friend life...
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