My brother who is mom's POA and guardian is moving my mom from her ALC the middle of next month against the doctor's advice. She is in the middle to late stages of dementia and she has been in doll therapy for over a year. At first I was against the therapy, but now that I have seen how much it helps her and know how much it means to her I know how important it is to her mental health. However, my brother is forbidding to bring the doll with her. She will be moving in with them and we have some valid concerns for her health and well being. We tried family mediation, but he came in with a bad attitude and scoffed at all suggestions. His wife will be the main caretaker of mom and will be getting paid from the trust. My brother works out of town most of the time. He said that there would be no visition at their house, if we wanted to see her we would have to pick her up and take her and bring her back. Also against doctor's advice. He also stated his wife would only be caring for her 8 hours a day. She is incontinent and in a wheelchair. We were told to come get all of our things from her room such as pictures and personal belongings, all of which were gifts to her. We refuse to remove them until he takes her out. He took her to her old family doctor the other day, he is just a regular doctor who doesn't have anything to do with dementia or geriatrics. My brother refuses to listen to anyone. Doctor's, lawyers, family. He thinks since he is the POA he can make all the rules. I have no desire to be POA, I am just concerned for my mom's health and well being. I am probably just venting here. Even the APS said we didn't have much of a chance even if we filed for Emergency Guardianship since he is the POA and Gaurdian. Can anyone offer us any hope? I think we have done just about all we can. It is just very frustrating and sad.

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Wife will find out it's not an eight he a day job. They can't leave her soiled and dirty. Whose going to get her ready for bed. Hang in there. They will either find their error or if not carrying for her needs you can call Senior services to check on Mom. I have a feeling he is trying to save money so he can inherit.
Helpful Answer (13)

Here's a different thought, just a suggestion, and that's to hire an elder attorney with litigation experience, or one who's in a law firm with litigators. Ask the attorney about filing for injunctive relief blocking the removal of your mother from the facility.

A TRO, or Temporary Restraining Order, could prevent your brother from removing her until a court, and probably outside medical personnel, can review the situation.

It's possible also that jurisdiction might be transferred to a different level of court which handles guardianships, and his guardianship behavior can be reviewed.

Back in the mid 1960s, I was a court reporter in Juvenile Court, within the Probate Court. In addition to delinquency and neglect petitions, we covered Probate hearings on mental incompetency, care of persons in need, and similar situations. Sometimes the judge would order mental exams to determine what an individual could or couldn't do in terms in self care.

A court does have the authority to override your brother's plans and create ones (or maintain an existing one) that benefits rather than interferes with your mother's health.

Administrative and high level staff at the facility she's in could verify this. If you take this route, ask them as well as the treating doctor if they'll consent to be witnesses and testify on your mother's behalf. Alternately, the Court could subpoena them.

E.g., an independent exam(s) might determine that your mother needed the doll therapy, and that it should be continued. It might determine that she should not be isolated from interaction with others and that isolation in the home would be detrimental, if not hazardous, to her mental health.

An independent exam might also (and probably would) determine that 8 hours of care is inadequate and that 24 hours of care is mandatory.

The court can step in and take jurisdiction and brother will have no choice but to obey. Document his abuses as guardian and be prepared to provide them to an attorney; they can be included in pleadings seeking injunctive relief to prevent him from carrying out his plans.

I don't necessarily agree with APS that b/c brother is proxy under a POA as well as guardian that there are no options. From what you write, he's not only not qualified to make a judgment on removal, but he's also not qualified to provide home care, or even make good decisions.

In addition, I think there might be issue of proxy abuse if he's going to dip into her trust to pay his wife. I think "self dealing" is likely to become an issue very quickly.

You might also calculate the cost of additional care for the 16 hours your SIL will not be providing care. That may total more than the monthly cost at the facility. In addition, at the facility she can be seen by doctors and qualified nurses. The home care plan apparently doesn't include these necessities.

And as has been pointed out by others, there's the issue of how the wife is going to step into a role (for which she presumably isn't experienced) and what will happen to your mother when the wife finds she's overwhelmed.

There ARE options, and they're through court intervention and taking jurisdiction over your mother's life as well as addressing, monitoring and perhaps removing your brother's control.

I'd start working on this immediately.
Helpful Answer (10)

Nancy, sounds like your brother wants his wife to have an income, so what better than taking care of your Mother and being paid from her savings. What was being paid for the assisted living will now be income for his wife.

I have a feeling that your sister-in-law has no idea what ALL is involved. I bet when they visit with Mom at the facility everything looks like a walk in the park. Sister-in-law needs to stay with Mom-in-law for at least 72 hours to get the full impact of what she is getting herself into.

Why on earth won't your Brother allow Mom to bring home the doll with her? My gosh, it's like taking away a teddy bear from a child. And only 8 hours a day caregiving? Ask him who is doing the other 16 hours? Will he be hiring someone? There is a very good reason why the doctor is against this plan.
Helpful Answer (8)

Listen to Garden Artist!! Lots of great down to earth advice there!!

There are a lot of huge red flags waving at you--which you're seeing.

Brother may have a 'Plan' sadly, it is probably based in thinking of finances and not love and care. I agree with the post that said to let SIL take care of mom and see how long that lasts. 8 hours is a small portion of the day, truly, caregiving for someone as bad as your mom is much more likely 24/7 "awareness" of her. Are they planning to just let her sit for 16 hours? I can imagine her sleeping for 12, that is not unusual, but what about needs at night time? Outside help is very expensive and overnight help is more so.

Why is brother refusing the doll therapy? Is he embarrassed (poor guy)? If he isn't on board with providing the same level of care mom has been receiving, he and wifey are in for a huge shock.

Really--sounds like you have a lot of non-communication and drama going on. Has this always been the case?

I'd follow GA's advice and hunker down and prepare for the worst. This situation has epic fail written all over it.
Helpful Answer (8)

At least $15/hour for the other caregivers. In my neck of the woods, more like $25-$40/hour for qualified help. (Key word: qualified.)
Helpful Answer (7)

Run - don't walk - to a family law or elder law attorney and, as Garden Artist wrote "seek injunctive relief blocking the removal of your mother from the facility." Lawsuits have been filed for far more trivial reasons than a bad son wanting to remove his mother from proper care, take away her therapy doll, and prevent family from visiting her.

I suspect that he will not allow visitors in his home because he knows that he will be criticized for the condition in which she will inevitably be found i.e. filth, etc.

You must protect your mother from him. Once you get an attorney, inform the facility where your mother resides of what you are doing because you will need their help. This is a terrible situation.

I hope that you will find the legal help you need to protect your mother from your cruel brother. His motive is clear: money. Once you hire an attorney you only communicate with your brother, his wife, and anyone else involved through the attorney so that you make no missteps along the way. You can do this!
Helpful Answer (7)

I'm sorry, but this sounds like a very disturbing situation - any idea what your brother's real motivation is? Financial or does he feel her current situation isn't working any longer ?

Only the rare person can handle a demented wheelchair bound person alone so if nothing else maybe you can offer SIL a little respite for an afternoon when bro is out of town - drop off a casserole for dinner or stop by with scones and a latte for her - if she refuses or won't let you in then so be it but at least you tried -

others may have some helpful tips
Helpful Answer (5)

Why won't he let you visit at home? He should be trying to make her living environment as much like what she is use to as possible. I have the same question of who will be caring for her when the wife is "off duty" ? Is brother planning to cut back on his travel to be home more?

Talk to an Elder Care lawyer.
Helpful Answer (5)

There are laws specifically designed to protect family members from other family members blocking their visitation and access to their own parent. If you are blocked, as I was, an attorney will help with the courts. However, that attorney will want the extra work of removing your brother as guardian and POA. You will have to assume that responsibility along with the financial cost of going to court. Otherwise you will have to live with them blocking your access to your mom. Same thing happened to me, only I could not assume POA or guardianship because my mom lived in Florida and I live in CT. The law strictly forbids this type of behavior and your brother would be immediately stripped of his powers. Be prepared to show evidence in court of the blocking. I called the police a number of times and got everthing on record. This is a form of manipulation called pathological evil behavior, usually played out by one sibling against another. Do something about it.
Helpful Answer (4)

I can't tell if your brother is being selfish or evil or just has a problem with the ALC, but it might be worthwhile to try to work with him before you try going around or against him. Since you haven't said why your brother says mom needs to live with him, I wonder if it's possible to ask him -- calmly, showing concern and no hint of accusation -- what he feels is not working for mom in the facility. (Or maybe it's a financial issue?) Maybe there's a way for you to work with the facility and/or other resources to get his issues addressed. Same thing with the doll: you could say that you've noticed how much help and comfort this has been to mom, and you're wondering what harm there would be if she kept it. Please exhaust all opportunities to have calm, conversations with your brother in a helpful tone; once you get into a confrontational posture, I'm afraid it will be very hard to gain any concession. You may find yourself alienated for life. Then you and mom both lose.
If you've already had cross words, you might try starting the conversation with some conciliatory words, like "I've been thinking about the huge decisions you have to make for mom, and I'm sure it's a lot of work and worry for you. Lots of people get burned out with this stuff, so if you need any help, please let me know, okay? [Pause for possible response.] I worry about her, too, so I was hoping you could help me understand what brought you to the feeling that she shouldn't stay where she is." It may be hard to stay calm, given your concerns, but if he's got all the power, I think trying to work with him might be your best means of getting the results you want... or at least understanding what's going on now and in the future. If it goes well, you can try addressing his objections to the ALC, one at a time. If that doesn't change his mind, you might work on the doll issue as I said earlier, and/or ask how his wife feels about all the things she'll have to do for mom as she ages. Maybe they don't really understand the amount of work and time this is going to take. Good luck!
Helpful Answer (4)

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