I have just been appointed my Aunt's durable power attorney. Any advice?


I have the POA paper work and don't know what all to do with it? What do I do with this paper work and who do I show/give this stuff to? I'm new with this stuff. It doesn't come with a instruction manual? Or step by step instructions?
My Aunt has signs of dementia. Some bills are paid late and she forgets what bills has been paid as paying bills twice a month. I need to be able to pay her bills for her by using her bank account. What do I need to say to the bank with this durable power attorney paper work? Will her bank give me accsess to her bank account with this durable power attorney paperwork? I will need to be able to draw cash out of her account to pay bills, food and other for her. I also, would like to setup auto bill pay for her so her bills are never late again. To do this I need access to her bank account as well as past bank statements to know what bills are being paid twice a month from her dementia. What do I need to say to the bank and what do I need to do? I also,was told to inform her doctor of this POA? Help please? I have no step by step instruction manaul for this stuff.

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I take care of my boyfriends grandmothers finances for her. He is listed as her primary POA, I am her second listed. We are also both signed onto her Medical POA. I set up her banking information online with her information (with her permission of course!!!) while she was right next to me. She really doesn't care where her money goes as long as she has the groceries she wants and money to go to eat when she wants. We wrote up a "contract" that we both signed over a year ago stating first I am to do what she wants with the money, (Pay specific bills of hers), then it can go to household bills (phone, cable, lights, groceries) THEN I can do whatever I want with it (gas in the car, diapers for the baby). I am not sure if this is the "legal" approach since it is not notarized, but its how we operate over here.

Her bank was very understanding when I first started taking over her finances, she was 81, had almost $2,000 she owed to the bank for overdraft and credit limit charges, so they understood she needed some help getting it straight (plus one worker is a friend of my mothers so she knew I wasnt trying to rob her but help her). Then again, it is a VERY small bank here, and they knew her by face because she was going into the bank every month to take her money out. I hope you can get it sorted out, and get things running smoothly!

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Rules on paying POA and family caregivers vary by state. It is permitted in my state. This may be a issue you should talk about with a different attorney, one representing you and your wife. What we have had to do because of uncooperative family members is have a guardian and conservator appointed to negotiate a care agreement. You may be able to do this without court action by hiring a geriatric care manager that would negotiate with you. Check with a good elder law attorney. You can find attorneys, ask them questions, receive responses, and view peer and client reviews on the site AVVO.
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In reply yes as stated on the POA for the bank my wife is second if I die or get unable to do so.For her living will both me and my wife are her POAs.I recieved three sets of papers.1 is for the bank and I think the rest is for the doctor.I don't have them at hand now to state what all they are for.
I know I am durable POA for finances.The bank said I now have full access but,I can setup online banking .We don't have a joint account.
I don't see why I can't pay my wife out of my Aunt's account for caregiver services?My wife and I are the Aunt's caregivers.I was asked by my Aunt to be her POA.I agreed.I had no idea that from me agreeing to this POA stops me from getting paid for my services as a caregiver.This caregiving is cost me money out of my pocket.Ware/tear on my car too and my time.
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Do the POA's list a person in second position? This is very important to have in case something happens to you.
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To blannie,
I contacted my Aunt's bank asking if I can setup online banking for her and the bank said no.The bank says Durable POAs are not allowed to have access to online banking.There for can not setup online banking.Only the account holder can do that.Same example as POAs are not allowed to be Joint on the account to whom their POA of.That is grounds of POA revoke doing so.
It's strange to here,
Before I called the bank manager and asked him if I can setup online banking for my Aunt?He replied to me,You can't but,the tellers up front in the bank can do it for you.If you would try doing it your self the system won't let you do it because,your not joint on the accounts.Someone at the bank must do that for you is what I was told by the manager.Then,the following week I called again asking about online banking and I was told I can't.
I here so many people telling me that they are POAs of their loveone and are joint on their bank accounts as well.I can understand if they was joint on their loveone's bank accounts before the POA was created.But,if you became joint on your loveone's bank accounts after your POA was created?That's grounds of POA revoke.As a Durable POA or other types of POAs your not allowed to barrow,Gift,Donate ect.Your not allowed to charge for POA services unless noted in your POA.
I had no idea what pain this POA is becoming.There is no instruction that came with this POA.Or a step by step hand book to work with.All I was told by the attorney is to show this DPOA to her bank and doctor.Both I did.I became my Aunt's DPOA for one reason.Because,I was told by her attorney she will need a POA.Dumbie me I agreed before thinking.I'm no book brain or have a high I/Q to know what all to do as a POA.Even reading all of this POA paper work requires a attorney to understand what's said in it all.There's big long words in there first for me lol.The attorney that created this DPOA didn't explain a thing to me on what to do or not to do.All he said was show to bank and doctor.
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You need to chat with the attorney about your duties. It is not pick and choose it is everything listed in the DPOA. And definitely keep all receipts of things you buy for her. Also, if possible avoid writing a check to yourself. You may be able to be paid for the work you do for her, but keep records of what you are doing and when.
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I'll tell you my situation, which is with my mom. I am her POA. I do all of her banking and have as much set up automatically as possible. I have access to her bank account online, so I can go back and do a history search to get prior month's statements if I wanted to. I also have a debit card for her account which I use for her groceries and other charges, like when I take her out to eat, or to buy gas for my car. Since I don't charge her by the month, I'll let others answer how to do that, but you can absolutely get it set up to automatically pay her bills and have online access to her account. I am also on my mom's bank account, which you might have to do to get all of that access, I'm not sure. But I'm sure a call back to the banker you spoke with can answer all of those questions.
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Thanks for the helpful information.I made a trip to the bank today.Showed the Papers to the banker.I explained to the banker that I have no idea what papers you need from me but,here is them all.The banker explained to me your now in control of your Aunt's life as everything he stated.You now have full access to her accounts.My Aunt made a check out for me to cash for her.My Aunt forgot to indorse the back of the check.The banker had me sign her name .Under that I signed "by" John Doe POA.The bank cashed the check for me.So,I guess I did that correct.And I guess I'm setup to cash my Aunt's checks for her when she's inable to do so.But,writing checks all the time, I think in time will become a pain for me as her POA.Because,I'm use to online banking and using bank debit cards or simply going to a ATM when cash is needed as my life & doing.My Aunt is the old school type of person that just writes checks for everything.And that's why some of her bills are late paying from her dementia as not remembering when/if she paid a bill or paid a bill twice as over payment of a bill.What I want to see done with my Aunt's bank account is to setup auto bill pay so bills are paid ontime not late anymore.And if ever possible to ask the bank for a debit card so checks don't need to be made out anymore.Is this a option for me as her POA to do so?

I next want to ask the bank for past bank statements.So,I know what all she pays,what all is or has been automatically taking out of her account each month.I would also,like to ask to have my Aunt's bank statements sent to my home address for now on because,of my Aunt's dementia losing things all the time or misplacing things.As I don't live with my Aunt to get her mail each day to know.Can this be done?
I understand as a POA I don't think I can write checkout for me.I have a friend that is caregiver for her Mom.The friend charges her Mom $800 a month for her services as caregiver.She has her Mom write a check out in the friends name to be paid each month.Sounds a little harsh to charge your mother $800 a month to take care of her but,that's the truth.Keep in mind this isn't my Mother this is my Aunt. I'm taking care of.I am her caregiver,POA.Everything she needs done I do.
By all means I don't want it to look like I'm taking advantage of my Aunt's funds.
As I am her caregiver ,money is starting to come out of my pocket as Gas money and my time as her caregiver.As I am my Aunt's POA can I charge my Aunt for my services as caregiver?
The fact is if it wasn't for me .My Aunt would already be in a nurcing home.I asked my Aunt what she wants and she states she want to live in her home alone on her own.I'm following her wishes.If I would hire a caregiver it would be much,much more in cost then what I would charge her.Same thing if I would hire a visiting nurce once,twice a week becomes costly.The fact is I'm saving her money by not hireing her a nurce or a caregiver but,now it's starting to come out of my pocket .20 miles one way trips to her home with gas prices these days takes a toll on my walet.In time it adds up.Not speaking of my time.And the wear & tear on my car .May sound harsh speaking of my time but,truth be told I have my own family to provide for .Can I as POA charge My Aunt $100 a month for my gas cost? If so,how do I do this?Doesn't sound right for me to write my self a check.I understand that all checks wrote must be filed/noted for safe keeping for my records.
I would just simple hire a caregiver but,my Aunt won't go for that.As she is very tight with her money.She can afford a caregiver but,she doesn't want that.She wants me to keep taking care of her.
I hear of other poeple charging their love ones for their time and cost for caregiver.
Is there a proper way of doing so?
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Sunflo has given you good advice. I'd also just add that you need to talk to your aunt about her wishes for healthcare and what happens when she starts to fade.

If she's not able to eat, does she want a feeding tube put in or does she just want to be kept comfortable? Does she want any measures taken if her heart stops? Does she want to be resuscitated, or is she ready to go if her heart stops? If she doesn't want to be resuscitated, get a DNR (Do Not Resuscitate) form filled out with her doc's signature and keep that with you also. Keep a copy at your aunt's place of residence (on her fridge) and if she lives in a facility, be sure they have a copy. If she always goes to the same hospital for care, give them a copy for her file as well. That form has to be available at the time of crisis (i.e. if her heart stops).

This all seems like a lot and it is, but once you get it all put in place, you'll feel much more secure.
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Go to the money and legal tab on this site and read up on what you can and cannot do w/POA. Does it state you have both financial and healthcare powers?

Next, consult with your attorney or the attorney who drew it up and let him give you a briefing on your legal powers. He should do this for free or at least answer some of your questions or ask him if he has a paralegal that would be able to answer some of your questions. Do your research first, so you understand what they might tell you and you ask the right questions. Not all POAs are created equal.

Next make several copies for yourself and keep one or two with you at all times should you need to provide proof or make a decision on behalf of your aunt.

Next, if it's financial, you may want to go to the bank(s) and meet with a bank mgr to align your name with the accounts so you can write checks, access savings, investments, etc should you need to. Anything you sign, must be signed as "Mary Poe, acting POA or DPOA for Emma Smith (aunt)". This keeps you from being liable for anything.

Sit with your aunt when she is most coherent and get her to go over investments, estate, deeds, wills, adv med directive, etc. so you have that info.

Lastly, POA isn't carte Blanche, so make sure you keep good financial records and receipts for her expenses, expenditures, and care. Set up a file.

Good luck. Others may have additional experience and advice.
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