Is it a crime to take funds for personal use from parents with Alzheimer when you have POA?

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My brother had a POA for my parents, both Alzheimer patients. My father died two years ago and mom died in June. My brother took a large sum of money from their accounts without notifying anyone. I suspect there are more funds missing. Is this a crime? How do I handle? I have refused to sign the Probate papers until this is resolved.

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People, PLEASE play nice!

I think the person asking the question deserves the benefit of the doubt. If everyone provided ALL the details in every post, we wouldn't have time to read them. If you suspect the questioner is "in error," ask a polite question to find out more.

I think the person asking the question is usually in pain or distress about a difficult situation. Kindness is in order.

If the question hits one of your hot buttons, please tell your story without assuming that the other party is a no good selfish do nothing. We have learned that there are good parents, OK parents and monster parents. There are saintly siblings, helpful siblings, unhelpful siblings, and monster siblings. Keep an open mind.

We all have such hard lives. Please, can we be kind to one another even if they don't seem to deserve it? I love you guys!
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I am reading these comments from siblings who are angry because their sibling who was the caregiver spent their parent's money. Well with all due respect .. where were you when the time came that your parent's needed care? One of you said that you left with your husband 2 years ago .. well how convenient to leave just when your parent's required care. If there is only one sibling doing all the caregiving as well as being POA then I don't think the other siblings have any right to question where the parent's money went .. as long as the parents were given proper care and being well taken care of etc. I find it so annoying that the siblings who move away and continue to have the freedom to live their lives, all of a sudden feel they should have "a say" when the parent dies about "where is all the money?" well I say " when your parent was alive why weren't you participating in the caregiving? Also, if it wasn't your sibling that was doing the caregiving and banking etc., how much do you think it would have cost to pay someone else to do all that work? That's what you have to think about. I have been live-in-caregiver for my mother for a year now, I pay myself a monthly salary and everybody in the family is aware that I do, I tell them if they have a problem with the money I pay myself than they are more than welcome to come and take over the job as live in caregiver and I will go back to living my normal life!
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I have POA for my mother and it gives me the right to withdraw funds to pay for any personal expenses I incur on her behalf. For example, I drive her to all of her appointments with doctors and do all her banking, grocery shopping, house keeping, laundry, food preparation, etc. I keep track of the gasoline I use on her behalf and pay for it from her checking account. I am 66 years old myself and am living on social security and have a part-time job. I frequently have to take time off from my job to care for her. I don't get paid when I don't work, so I keep track of hours I miss on her behalf and reimburse myself from her checking account. It would be a financial hardship for me to care for my mother, if I could not be reimbursed for expenses like this. My mother has a substantial estate and can well afford to reimburse me. Before she became incapacitated, she stipulated this in the POA. And one more thought occurs to me. I have been caring for my mother, 24 hours a day, for 18 months and I did the same for my father before he passed away. My brother lives far away and does nothing to assist me. However, he is entitled to half of my mother's estate when she's gone. He does not begrudge me the funds I withdraw from her bank account to defray the expenses I incur now on her behalf. I have also been named executor of her estate in her will, and it also stipulates that I should be reimbursed for expenses I incur in settling her estate.
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IMO it's not necessary for poster to post an update for us or let us know which answer they took...this is a forum for support and casting a wide net for a number opinions, advice, and personal experience.

It is not a soap opera for us to find out the latest goings on nor a competition for who hit the right answer.

I don't think any poster is just sitting back enjoying the "bickering and in fighting like a bunch of jealous siblings" -- who has time for that when you are in the middle of your own caregiving dilemma?

It is nice when we can get the outcome of a situation, whenever that update might come...if just so others of us can benefit from that persons experience and what worked or didn't work.

Lets not judge or cast stones folks, just love and support one another please, lest we drive each other away.
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POA (Power of Attorney) is only for when the people are alive, once they have died the POA does not have legal access to their bank accounts without the permission of the executor.
I am my mother's POA which gives me the legal right to handle her money and pay her bills, but I do NOT have the legal right to take money out of her account and spend it on ME, that is called stealing! I can take money out of her account for her needs, no one else's.
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We now have guardianship of my sister in law. Before that her son had poa and was on her checking account. He spent over 50,000 dollars on himself, even writing a check to his wife for over $9,000. We tried to get the money back but lawyer said since he was on the checking account, he did nothing legally wrong.Be careful. What is legally right may be morally wrong
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There is a difference between spending money for care instead of providing the care yourself, which may or may not be "selfish," (deciding to pay for care and spend down to become Mediciad eligible is not always the wrong way to go, for a variety of reasons) versus taking the money for personal use instead, which should not be tolerated under a properly written POA that spells out the POAs obligations, BUT in general is unfortunately legal if names are on the credit cards and accounts.

A "hot button" issue on here is when it looks or even smells like one family member who is not actively providing care sits in judgement of the ones who are doing so, failing to recognize what is really going on or how hard or impossible personal caregiving has become, and criticizing decisions that are made, from afar. HardWorking's family appears to be doing things right from that point of view, but sometimes you hear of a sibling who considers the caregiver to be stealing or freeloading in that situation. And, sometimes you hear of a sibling who realy IS stealing and freeloading and maybe even failing to actually provide care. And emjo is right about what a POA should be doing. Every situation is a little different and words on a screen may tell only part of a story.
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My mothers attorney told us the person who is primary on a POA or DPOA is to use the money for the care and needs of the parent not for your own needs or care unless your parent has stipulated in the documentation that you can received reimbursement for your time. Yes the POA can wrongly withdraw money for their own use if their name is on the accounts. My sister sends me copies of the financial statements so I can see where the money is going. I did not ask her to do that. Hopefully the person handling their parents finances, does it for the best interest of their parent without basically embezzling money for their self. My thoughts are that if your brother withdrew large amounts of money for himself, it is illegal.
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Well Ms macada, you obviously don't have all the info to make these comments about me. Here are the facts: My bro & his wife lost their home (over a $3000 tax bill) and had no where else to go, so it was their choice to come for a while, I had been taking care of both my parents for 10 yrs, so it is not like I just popped in and popped out, and just left them. I was there through surgeries, falls, hospitalization, drs appt, cooking, cleaning, financing and anything else they needed. His wife hated my Mother and said terrible things about her. They activated cc in my parents names and maxed them out. It is fairly easy to spend other people's money. I never got paid or wanted to be paid. And furthermore, I am not sure they have been properly taken care of. So before you rant and rave about your "normal life", don't judge if you don't know the whole story.
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Also, genessa, let's not forget the fact that you must have agreed to let them come, and handed over the reins, in spite of the evil SIL, didn't you? If they 'chose' to come, wasn't it up to you to 'choose' to let them? If that's the case, why are you complaining now? If you questioned their integrity, why did you allow them to take over? You could have told them no, and bet they would have found somewhere to live. If you questioned their care giving while they were there, why didn't you jump back in and take over again yourself?
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