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I am living and care taking my Mother (95) who has dementia. My car is costing thousands to keep it running. It has over 122,000 miles and keeps breaking down. I need reliable transportation for her. Years ago, the lawyer said that would be alright. My mother is still physically healthy except for incontinence. I am hoping that I will be able to keep her in her home except I think I will require respite care.

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If you don't have a current license, you can't buy a car.
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Years ago is not the same as now. Using your DPOA to provide yourself with a vehicle is punishable in court, and would jeopardize any application for Medicaid or Aid & Attendance. Ask the lawyer.
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Depending on the vehicle, 122k can be a lot of miles. Spending thousands on a car for repairs means you might as well be making monthly car payments.

I don't think your POA will )et you buy your mom a car. Can you afford to make your own car payments?
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Liz, your question is complex.... your best bet is to hire an Elder Law attorney who knows the current ins and outs of Medicaid [just in case your Mom might need it] and what would be the best way to purchase a car.
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Thinking this over again, I don't think an insurance carrier would issue a policy covering someone who is not driving but has only lent the money to her daughter to purchase and drive the car. I also think it would be unfair to your mother to be liable for any accidents that might occur with the car.

Just expanding the thought of the purchase for services provided to another, there might even be some issues of whether or not the car is compensation for those services, and whether or not there might be a commercial element to your using a car purchased specifically for services to be provided to your mother.

I don't mean to be blunt or rude, but is there some reason you're not able to purchase a car by yourself?
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I think the question is more, "Will a finance company accept a DPOA for financing." I suspect you will have a problem.
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Years ago mom was competent & cognitive & still was driving, right? Flash forward to now...She doesnt need a car, it's you that needs a car and not just for her needs but your own as well.

If mom has oodles of $$$$ and there is absolutely no ? of mom ever needing Medicaid or a facility, then using her $$ to buy a car in her name is no worry & you want her will to state that you are the heir so the car can transfer to you after her death via probate or a muniment. But if Medicaid should be applied for, mom can continue to own it (some states have value limits on cars) but will have no $ to pay on anything car (gas, insurance, maintenance) etc and the car will be an asset of her estate and subject to a claim or lien and you will have to file for exemptions or exclusions to try to get a release of the states claim or lien. Thus can get quite messy.

What about having mom do a caregiver agreement with you in which she pays you, all on the up & up with taxes, so that you have income or savings to be able to get credit to buy a car? At 95 & healthy, mom could get to 100. Respite care as a Medicare benefit is available, but you may find that facilities want them to either have an additional ltc policy or Medicaid to cover any gaps that the short Medicare respite days does not cover or private pay for any gaps.

. Eventually mom & her income will end, then what? I don't mean to sound harsh, but over & over on this site are posts from daughters (& the rarer sons) who leave their jobs to take care of parents for free and find their own financial situation dire (& sometimes their own health as well) once the parent dies or moves into a NH (as need a higher level of care). Take care of mom but plan for yourself as well.
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I have an unsettled feeling about this but can't really put my finger on the issue. I'm assuming you're not working and your retirement and/or SS is inadequate to finance another car?

Actually, 122K miles isn't that much; mine has about 137K and runs like a charm. Perhaps you just got something from the lemon batch?

What I'm wondering though is the issue of purchasing in your mother's name. As legal owner, she'd be the one to be insured on an insurance policy, which you'd obviously have to have, and would be responsible for any accidents that might occur.

But she would have no driver's license, as I assume she's not driving.

So she would pay for the car and still be liable for anything that happened to it?

I guess this is the part that makes me question the validity of this move. It seems she would be paying for the car and assuming all liability but never driving it, even though she would be a passenger.
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