Follow
Share

My brothers have undermined me before, by making the decision to put my mom in a home while I was on vacation/respite. I am Mom's AMD and it was stated on there that my approval was needed to put her in any kind of facility. Instead, they are paying me off - hush money - not to argue with them over that decision.


Now, it's worse. My brother claims he needs guardianship over Mom to sell the house. I read up on it, and he only needs to be her conservator. I'm not a lawyer, but my brother CAN apply just to be her conservator, right?


And here's the kicker, he is also claiming that my mom was mentally incapacitated when she signed my AMD, even though he was a witness, and he is trying to have the one she made in 2003 reinstated. Leaving me without any power, but more importantly, blatantly going against Mom's wishes.


My brothers and I do not get along, due to a history of family dysfunction. Dad favored me when we were young which is not my fault, but my brothers have put it in writing that they want nothing to do with me.

I am willing to fight this, not for me, but for my mom since she made it clear to everyone in the past that she always wanted me to be in charge of her medical decisions. I was her best friend for over 20 years. I know practically everything about her and no one can argue with that.


My lawyer brother does not have an empathetic bone in his body, but I can't do this alone. It's too much and now that my parents aren't here, I have no family and no one to turn to.


One brother is an attorney and the other one is a wealthy CIO of a Fortune 500 company. They are used to being cold and calculating. As a teacher, I'm not. My mom was the same way. My big heart has made me a target.


I gave up my job, my benefits for one year to care for my mom 24/7 and then my dad became fatally ill, so I cared for him 24/7 as well. Yeah, 48/7 doesn't make sense. I asked for help numerous times and got no response, even when I sent them information on caregiver burnout. They said I was being dramatic and still believe caregiver burnout is just a cop-out. I quote, "Caregiving is not the type of job where you are entitled to days off." from my super smart successful brother... Seriously?


I have wanted to give up so many times, but my health has already taken a toll and this is making it so much worse. I WANT to fight, but I am alone without a job, without money and the hush money will be cut off if I fight.


I may be naive, but how can family treat each other like this? I have no one in my corner. I am being evicted on June 1st, thanks to my brothers, even though I haven't had time to find a job.


I've noticed how people on here have some very helpful advice. I've even put in my two cents, but now, I need help. Facts will help the most because that's what I will need for court.

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
Typical. It IS true, "You have NO CLUE what a caregiver is or does, until you become one". The caregiver, the one with the loving, gentle, heart, gets stomped on again and again. I call it bullying, because they have money and power but not a loving heart and most don't lift a finger to help or understand the stresses of caregivers or the loving relationship they are trying to breakup without a thought as to how it will affect mom. Who else has jobs 24/7 with no pay, breaks, benefits??? The softheart becomes the sheep, and the others becomes the lion. I know how you feel and will pray you can continue to see your mom. SHE NEEDS YOU, someone she loves to show continuity in her life and will go into a deep depression if that is taken away, and will go down hill faster. If you are there often, it will go a long way toward "making the time she has left on earth HAPPIER!" Isn't that what we all want for them? Even with dementia/Alzheimers' they CAN recognize you until almost the last month of life. PLEASE do get the doctor to order HOSPICE, IF it's possible, depending on the level of the medical condition, her needs. They helped me sooo much with education, caring, resources...being there everytime we called. Most facilities these days do not have on site living for family/staff. God bless you and mom.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Correction - "on Medicaid". And it doesn't allow you to keep the house for yourself, if someone else is guardian and needs to sell the house, they can do it, but the money generally goes to Medicaid.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

First, an AMD is of little use in selling a house - if your mother is not competent, a POA signed when she was competent, or guardianship if she never did a POA and is now incompetent, is what is needed. (I had to do this to help my disabled uncle when my aunt became incompetent.) With a guardianship, they are accountable to the courts for your mother's money and they are prohibited from enriching themselves, BUT, they CAN charge for their services, with the approval of the court. You did not say if your mother is no Medicaid. A whole host of other things come into play if that is the case. You may be entitled to stay in the house to keep it from going to Medicaid until you leave. Maybe they need the money to pay for her care? There weren't enough facts to get a handle on what's going on. It sounds like you have had some pretty good indications of your brothers' intentions and maybe they feel like you have had enough time to make some decisions about your own life so are "kicking you out of the nest" - or maybe the house is becoming a financial drain and needs a lot of work so they want to get rid of it? If they have enough money to provide you with a stipend (not sure why it is hush money), try to work a businesslike arrangement with them. Ask for a lump sum you can use for a down payment on a house or rental (it is going to be hard to find a place if you have no job and no income). Maybe even take a CNA course - ask them to let you stay until you complete it - and then apply for a job where your mom is so you can see her AND make money AND not have burnout from 24/7 responsibility for her. Some places even supply a unit for their help at a reduced rate, as a way to make sure there are people available in emergencies. There are also people who want live in caretaking assistance - with children or elderly - where it is not a 24/7 commitment, you get a roof over your head, pay and benefits (including vacations). A friend of mine sold her home and travelled all over doing house sitting - often for a month or more at a time - sometimes for people with pets. It took care of her housing needs, and she stored her pared down belongings and learned to travel light (even went to chef's school in France during one of her house sitting jobs). With no income and an eviction notice, maybe apply for emergency housing with your local housing authority. The one thing you cannot do is to do nothing, if you want to pick yourself up by your bootstraps and move on with getting your life back. Do not focus on your brothers or how mean you feel they are being - focus on you, your needs, and figuring out how you will survive for the near future, and how to be happy for the long term. Good luck!
Helpful Answer (3)
Report

Youngestsis, what is your hoped for outcome? You do not sound like you have the funds to be a long term caregiver to your mom. What money you are receiving from your brother will cease should you endeavor to remove her from the facility. So if you are realistic, bringing her home is not an option.

So, is your concern ensuring you maintain access to your mother and that you maintain a say in her medical care? Are you identified as her Medical Power of attorney? Do you know what attorney drew up the AMD? Was it someone other than your brother? It sounds like there may be powers that you are unaware of if your brothers are trying to take over through assigned guardianship. I could be right, I could be wrong. If it was another attorney, see if you can find out what documents were drawn up and who was delegated what responsibilities.

Forms commonly associated with estate planning which designate who performs what roles:

1. Will - identifies executor of estate and instructs executor of desired distribution of estate.
2. Authorization to release medical information (HIPPA) - identifies who can have access to your mother's medical information.
3. Durable Power of Attorney - identifies who can make decisions related to managing a persons finances etc. this does not usurp the rights of your mother. All decisions and actions taken by the DPOA must be in the best interest of your mother.
4. Medical power of attorney - identifies the individual authorized to make medical decisions should your mother be unable to make them herself (not necessarily tied to end of life decisions).
5. Directive to physicians or surrogates - identifies what medical lengths are to be taken in the event that your mother is unable to make her own medical decisions and is in a terminal condition. I believe this is what you are referring to as an advanced medical directive. This directive does not assign anyone as having any powers. It makes clear the wishes/preferences of an individuals desires given a terminal condition.

The lack of assigned responsibility associated with a Medical Directive is what makes me wonder if perhaps you were listed as MEDICAL POA. That would mean he is in charge of financial decisions while you are in charge of medical ones. You need to know for sure who was assigned all these responsibilities. You should have a copy of the medical directive and that will have the attorneys name. Contact him to gain clarity of who has what responsibilities. Check your mother's files, she should have received copies of all these documents and the law office will be easily identifiable.

Be sure you identify what you want to achieve. Put the thought of bringing her home out of your mind, you are simply not in a position to be her caregiver. If it were me, I would want access to my mother, a say in her medical care, her happiness in her new location (go in like Polly Sunshine for your visits with her), and less stress between the brothers and myself.

Identify your goal, determining what is reasonable and realistic. Identify who has what assigned responsibilities and then proceed with a plan to achieve what is most important for your mother - not you. In the presence of sibling rancor putting hard feelings aside can be the hard part.



It appears that it is in both her and your best interests for her to stay in this facility. Visit often and be supportive of staff, make them aware of problems nicely. Tell them how much you appreciate their efforts on behalf of your mom. Pick your battles. Don't point out everything that you feel is not up to your desires. Think strategically. Sometimes the way you get what you want is to keep your mouth shut, even when you feel your position is right. Get the workers to see you as an understanding supportive person to them, they will be more inclined to go the extra mile for your mom. They are human, just like the rest of us.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

Big hugs. I'm sorry, because I know how stressful and heart-breaking this must be for you. Big hugs.

Next, take a deep breath. Think!

So you went to the facility and were unimpressed (hopping mad?) to hear that your mother had suffered a second fall. When you say you pointed it out... what happened, exactly?

Your brother's being a little bit disingenuous about the POA vs healthcare proxy Top Trumps game (it isn't a game, for a start). The POA is responsible for your mother's contract with the facility, and controls it. You remain responsible for protecting your mother's health and welfare interests; but can we go into that a bit?

You refer to "your" AMD. AMD standing for Advance Medical Directive, I'm not clear what sort of authority your mother aimed to give you when she drew this up. What is your status, legally, do you know?

Your brother is talking about contesting the AMD because you are using it, as he sees it, to be a nuisance. No doubt he agreed to it at the time because he thought it would shut you up and couldn't do any real harm, seeing as it's the money that matters (and he's not wrong, is he? It is the money that counts). A court would consider this demonstration of his willingness to involve you in decisions about your mother's care. Again, you would lose this argument in the end.

I'm sorry to be constantly telling you things that will seem not to help. But I'm thinking of your mother wanting to see you, and you wanting to visit her and spend loving time with her, and the risk of that disappearing. I want you to win!
Helpful Answer (3)
Report

The way I'm reading this, your brothers are willing to give you money to start over--I don't see that as "hush money", I see it as compensating you for the job you did for your mother. You should have been drawing a salary for caregiving all along.

Your cousins are not going to help out with caring for your mom. They are not going to give you respite the many hours a week that you need (that ANY ONE) does. Your mom has reached the stage where she needs three shifts of rested, trained caregivers.

Elders fall. They fall at home and in facilities. Falling is not a reason to keep mom at home. In bed in her underwear? Yes, that is something to bring to the attention of the person on duty at the time, nicely, AND to the Social Worker and DON the next day. Again, nicely.
Helpful Answer (4)
Report

Sweetheart - get involved in what? What are you hoping to do? Spring your mother from her facility? Bad idea. If your plan is that you bring your mother back to live in her home, with you as her primary caregiver, what are you going to do about the burnout? How are you going to cope as things become more difficult, for who knows how many more years? Even if you win in court - you won't, your brother's trying to explain something to you and doing it badly is not going to scupper his guardianship application - but even if you win in court, you lose. Because all you'd win is no job, no home of your own, no prospects and no security. You would be NUTS to volunteer for this.

And to accomplish what for your mother? How is this going to help her? She has dementia, she needs skilled care from a large team of trained people. Borrow some of your brothers' calculating mindsets and think realistically about what is best for her, too.
Helpful Answer (3)
Report

My brother 'threatened' to have me barred from her facility because I pointed out that Mom has fallen twice already since she has been there. This is what I received from my brothers... and I just noticed the mention that his POA trumps my medical authority... If that's true, why is my brother trying to have my AMD deemed invalid... Are they lying?

"The business relationship between ** and the family is through lawyer brother who has a PoA that trumps your medical authority. If you have a reasonable issue with Moms care you need to raise it through him. *** can choose to limit your time in their facility or bar you from it entirely. -lawyer brother- and I are completely in agreement with *** taking any actions they need to do to protect Mom's ability to stay under their care.
You can not behave this way. Please don't argue with me as the proof that you understand my message is when we do not get another phone call from **."
Oh, and notice how there was NO mention of any concern over Mom falling.  None, or when I found Mom in bed for the night in just her underwear.  No concerns over her well-being, just a concern for the relationship with the facility...  not mom.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

We do have cousins who have not been involved, but my brother mentioned them in his email. They love my Mom like I do. If I can prove that my brother is lying when he says he NEEDS to be Mom's Guardian, (instead of her Conservator,) then there is good chance they might be willing to get involved - for Mom's sake. Also, my close relationship with Mom is no secret, and they might be willing to get involved over his request to change the AMD. I can't go to them now. I need to make sure I know what I'm talking about. Btw - Mom moved into the care facility on March 20th just over a month ago.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Darling girl.

You do have a big heart, and you are a loving daughter.

Your brothers *disagree* with you about the best way to care for your mother. They don't think anyone should give up their job, their economic security, their employment benefits in order to keep a frail elder at home. They couldn't stop you doing that if you wanted to; but they weren't either going to contribute to what they believed was fundamentally a wrong and unwise decision.

They seized their opportunity to move your mother while you were getting much needed respite care. And now you can't afford to contest that decision. And you *can't* afford it. You too have to eat and pay bills.

You have just over a month before you need to move. Your mother is safe and looked after. Presumably you are free to visit her whenever you wish? Find a job. Find somewhere to live. You don't have the time or the money to go to court against two people who know what they're doing and have demonstrated their care for their mother's best interests in their own, hard-headed, problem-solving way.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

So your mother is in a care facility now? When did she move?

I do note that you're asking for facts. Facts that will assist you in combating your wealthy, successful and efficient brothers... but to achieve what?
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.