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I have Durable POA and could step in if need be. My dad is 90. He keeps reading info on the internet and fears that he and my mom's money will be taken from them. So he's looking for a safe to keep all their money in the house. OR he's looking for switching all the money into Swiss money -- or gold. Aagh!!! He is a very brilliant man who has lost the ability to do everything that gave him purpose in life (fixing everything that needed fixing in the home, teaching, etc.). So this is his way of "being in control." All that this does is cause friction between my mom and dad, and I can't help him listen to reason.
He was tested for balance issues by his neurologist about 8 months ago (CAT scans, but not MRI) and was found to be clear of Alzheimer's. But I realize that can change at any time.
I feel like I'm having to be marriage counselor as well as caregiver to both of them. When is the point that I need to take financial decisions away from him?

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While it's possible that your dad has some valid ideas, it sounds to me as if your concern is that he wants control over his money no matter what. Is there a way that you can give him a small amount to "play" with? A lot depends on assets, but if he has his own account of some kind maybe that would satisfy him.

If your parents have a financial counselor this person may be able to reason with your dad. Getting things out of the family can be a big plus - it takes away the feeling that he's being bossed around.

Good luck with your struggle. This isn't uncommon and it is very, very frustrating.
Carol
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I can feel your concern and frustration. Just a heads up, I have POA for my 93 year old mom, but her attorney explained that a POA isn't as easy to enact as you'd think. The individual would have to be compliant and willing to let you do it, because a POA can be changed at any time unless the person is deemed incompetent by their medical team...or even a judge. I was told that even if the person is only 40% mentally competent, it would still be challenging. POA's in my book are only useful if the person is totally compliant/cooperative, or if they are completely mentally gone. Not easy, very disturbing for those who are on the border, but it's made that way to protect the senior from being taken advantage of. Good luck.
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Yikes, lots of financial advice here!

But, back to your question about Dad. It could be that he's still thinking critically about his finances (as many answers here assume), but I'm gonna make an experienced guess that this is a dementia symptom. Illogical or extreme dealings with his finances were the first sign of his dementia and we didn't see it because everything else was 'normal' (or so we thought at the time, looking back, I can now identify some signs). By the time we inserted ourselves into his finances, he had literally nothing left but the roof over his head. Even that was compromised by his failure to pay his real estate taxes. It's been five years of mess and stress that I wouldn't wish on anyone.

So, if Dad was always one to consider the 'road less traveled' with regard to his investments, maybe that's all he's doing here. BUT, don't stand by until it's too late.

Has he always handled every bit of his investments? If not, and there's an investment counselor he trusts, take him for an appointment to discuss. Also, if you haven't already, while he's still pretty sharp, take him to see an elder law attorney. That way, you can get their estate in order and secure what he and Mom will need to live on should they need care. Maybe if you set aside some 'mad money' for him to shuffle around it will alleviate his anxiety about controlling his money. That's a VERY common thing among those who suffer from dementia.

I have a family friend who has always been very sharp with investments, now that he's in his late eighties he spends as much as 8 hours a day puttering around on his computer, watching and moving his money. A fleeting anxiety and a few clicks of his mouse and he could jeopardize his whole future.
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The Swiss Franc is pegged to the EURO. That wont help him much but I think that your Father is not as off track as you believe. With most of the Central Banks, China, Russia, India and several of the European countries trying to re patriot their gold holdings the USD is being dumped rapidly.
The increase in the USD is a direct result of how bad the global macro economy is and obviously based on our debt and labor participation rate the dollar has gone from being used in over 70% of trade to 50% and is losing reserve currency status as all other fiat currencies have done in the past.
Several highly respected financial ellitists have upped their advise on holding 10% of assets in precious metals to 50%. To meet him half way and put 50% in pm's in my opinion is not such a bad idea right now.
I do alot of research on this subject and most of the big banks are having record setting shifts from bonds to gold and silver. You know what they say "When in Rome"
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Charmin, where is your dad and mom's money right now? Conservatively invested, t, bills? Is he worried about losing his funds to medicaid claw back (real) or some invisible force that's going to confiscate everything (delusion)?

Has he had cognitive tests of reasoning, not just memory?

Does he have a fee for service financial advisor he trusts?
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Unfortunately the "invisible force" is now quite visible. The new bail in rules to protect the TBTF's have been clearly written into law now. Your bank deposits and retirement funds are now considered a loan to the bank and not your money. With the top 5 banks being into the derivatives market with your "invested" deposits at the tune of 700 trillion dollars (mostly currency/ Forex markets) they have made it legal to keep your money and give you worthless promisary notes.
It is no longer a theory but a law. Remember Cypriots ended up with 20 cents on the dollar of their bank deposited funds.
zerohedge/news/2014-11-12/russell-napier-declares-november-16-2014-day-money-dies
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Yes. It happened to my IRA's at a credit union, a credit union I am very active with. I thought if I left them to re invest they would be a "nest egg" later. I found that after 3 years they just disappeared. It took 6 months of ridiculous paperwork to get them back. (fyi credit unions are regulated different them banks)
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Charmin...

I can offer you some advice from my own experience! I am close to your father's age..."87" and I have been the "financial" advisor in my own family since we were married.

My wife recently "passed" and I am responsible only for myself alone. I have 3 children, 6 grandchildren and 6 great grandchildren. All of my family fortunately are not waiting for my demise.

I like your father, have few years to go even if our health is ok. I have quite a bit of assets that are liquid and am only concerned with saving them for as long as I need them. I'm not worried about my children.

My solution to "where to put the money" is this ===. I have a (revocable family trust). It is a trust where I am the only trustee and my daughter is next in line in case of my death. She has "POA for all of the financial & my two sons are 3rd & 4th in line in the event my daughter becomes unable to manage her affairs. Plus she has a POA for my health affairs.

The only reason that I am concerned about all of this money is in case I require " long term care" or "assisted living", I will be capabile to pay for it. If anything is leftover after my death, all of the trust money and assets go to my children as the "Will" states which is also attached to the trust.

I suggest allowing your father the "right" to know that he still has control of his money but it is locked into the trust.

You will need a competent attorney to take care of setting all this up.S

Good luck and God bless,

Sonny
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If you dad is of sound mind, he should be able to do what he wants with his own money.

I'm not going to get into the financial aspects of this, although I will make one comment. Years ago, my dad told me not to take out home improvement loans because at some point the housing market would have a correction.

I laughed.

He was right.

'nuf said.
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"You know what, Dad, you're right -- things are volatile, and it's a good idea to revisit the financial plan. I want to learn, too. So I found this very highly recommended financial adviser, who spends all day thinking about this stuff. Will you go with me, so we can both here what HE or SHE has to offer to the conversation?" EVERYBODY needs another brain to bounce their ideas off -- as all the advice here shows!
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