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I cared for her for 4 yrs. I slept in the same bed with her. Washed, dressed, cooked, cleaned, shopped, doctors app't, helped to use bathroom, companionship 24/7. Only got a few weekends off a year. Brothers say I deserve $0 for her care because I lived and ate for free. Should I get a lawyer, or is it just a waste of time. Thank you for taking the time of giving some advice, I'm grateful.

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Hello Ellie, reading Your post : I've learned Your dear Mom felt much more comfortable having You as Her chief Caregiver, which signifies that You had been very kind and loving and caring to Your Mom. Your Brother's should bow Their heads in shame. If We lived in a just and fair World, it is You Who should get everything, because You loved Your Mom more than Them. I think the best thing to do is contact Your Mom's legal representative before the will is read, and put a stay on the will until all of Your expenses are paid in FULL first. Four years and 24/7 allowing for time and a half + double time sould come to an awful lot of wages. Keep away from Lawyer's because They would end up taking most of Your Mom's estate. Best of luck to You Ellie.
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It's amazing how our siblings work at their chosen jobs/occupation, and they are able to pay for much more than just bare bones room and board. A job is a job is a job. Professional, hired elder care is very expensive, so a family member that sacrifices their own employment opportunities to caregive is saving the heirs much money in many cases... and I think most elderly family do prefer that they are cared for by a relative, not strangers.

I'm sorry for your situation and that your brothers think the last 4 years of your dedication to your mother's needs are worth nothing. All I can say is - this topic, your situation, is adding to my own determination to get a caregiving contract in place between me and my father. Having a place to live is not fair compensation for 24hour caregiving.

If you give brothers a cost analysis of what it would've cost to bring in outside help for mom for all the things that you provided for her, do you think they would be sympathetic? Right now they don't understand how much goes into being a caregiver. Can you help them understand better? Make a list of everything you did, assign a minimal dollar amount to it, give them the list... it can't hurt at this point because you don't have legal recourse.

Wondering "out loud" if this type of situation would ever be considered in a small claims court. You could only get the max of whatever your local court can award (I recall $5k being max in another state), but you can file on your own to get your case heard for little cost. Worst thing that can happen is a judge says you aren't entitled to anything.
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I am so sorry you didn't have a fair arrangement worked out to be compensated while you were doing the caregiving. Now you only get whatever the will says -- nothing to make up for your lost wages.

It is too late for you but I hope this helps other caregivers understand the advice so many of give: If your parent can afford it, he or she should be paying you for your services while you are providing the services.
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What does mom's Will say? Unless she put a caregiving share in the Will, you get nothing extra. We always tell caregivers to get paid along the way, because of situations like yours.
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How much in assets is at stake here? Legal help can be expensive in a long drawn out law suit. We're hearing one side here , but I think if you did all the care and your dear brothers contributed zilch, you should get it all. Sadly it's a common senerio, the women do all the care giving and the men show up when the will is read. (Sorry to my fellow male caregivers, but lots of men shirk their responsibilities . Might as well be honest about it)
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Elllie, if your Mom's house doesn't have no mortgage to pay could you stay there till your Mom's house sold meanwhile look for another income? Your brothers should help you with maintaining mom's house expenses. I don't know how old you are... Please get back to your life asap.... Sorry about your loss...
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I'm sorry that your mother is gone and it has caused bad feelings in the family. I agree with freqflyer that it may be too late to seek compensation. That needed to be done while your mother was still alive. It is sad how the people not involved in caregiving don't realize how much work it is. They don't stop to think that they personally would not work for room and board. I hope that you are able to get back on your feet quickly. Many caregivers find themselves in the same position when their loved one passes. Big hugs.
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So sorry to read about your mother's passing.

As for being paid after the fact, it might be too late as there is no documentation such as a employment contract between you and your mother saying how many hours you worked and at what pay per hour :(
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