Follow
Share

Grandparents have 2 children with each one being primary for either medical or financial and the other secondary. The child that is primary for medical has been an alcoholic since I was a child almost 40 years ago and recovered for about a year right after their father under went surgery for a brain bleed. At that time, grandparents did the POA, the child stopped drinking but since then has relapsed even worse. Grandparents won't even have the child drive them to appointments because of the drinking and have started question that child's ability to help make medical decisions. The other child has seen what the other sibling has been doing to their parents and treatment of them. Yelling at them until they get their way on how things are doing, telling people that they need to go into full time care and that doctor said that (doctor doesn't say that), telling the doctors that they can't care for themselves, that they fall, can't remember anything, not listening to their wishes for just daily living and not even talking to them about what they want or need.


The other child lives across country and can't be here everyday so us grandchildren have stepped in to help them. Our grandma is dealing with high blood pressing, gout, bladder problems and joint problem(can't get around fast or lift arms high). Grandpa has short term memory problems from brain surgery, allergies and asthma, and skin cancer. They can't drive, cook or clean. We go over and do these things for them and spend time with them. We have also been now taking them to the doctor instead of the child that has primary medical POA, getting prescriptions and everything else while the child now only comes over once a week or every other week. Also this child has their friend telling them how to take care of their parents and make the decisions for their parents health instead of talk to their parents or sibling. We are worried that even if the grandparents try to change the medical POA that the child will try to say they don't have the mental capability. Is this a case where we can say the medical POA is not mentally able to care for parents?

From what you have said, the POA is correct, your grandparents can not care for themselves.

People that can not drive, cook or clean are dependent on others to prop them up. Period.

Being POA does not mean that you have to do hands on care, it means that you make sure that someone is helping get these things done. It means acting as the person would if they were able to act for themselves. When they are no longer able to act for themselves. Otherwise you have no obligation to do anything for them.

Often times parents are stubborn and refuse to admit that they can no longer care for themselves, especially obstinate when dealing with their adult children. Assuming that they have assigned a personal slave when they assign POA to someone, that is not the purpose of a POA. Your aunt/uncle doesn't need to be a chauffeur, sounding board, personal assistant or any other thing for your grandparents. They need to ensure that they are directing medical professionals to do the treatments that comply with their wishes. That's it.

If I can encourage you to read what the responsibilities are for your state and POAs. This will help you understand what exactly should be expected from the POA and how your grandparents can change who represents them if they choose to. Please be advised that no one can change their POAs except them. If you or anyone forces them to do it or convinces them that they need to do it, yes, it could be legally contested and any change could be made invalid.

Just curious, who is telling you that the doctor did not say they needed 24/7 care? Because I personally know that my dad only hears what he wants and will call me a liar when I repeat what the doctors say if it doesn't fit what he wants.
Helpful Answer (0)
Reply to Isthisrealyreal
Report

I hope you'll find this link helpful:

https://www.michigan.gov/documents/miseniors/Advance_Directives_230752_7.pdf

It's from the Michigan Long Term Care Ombudsman Program, and although its title relates to Advance Directives specifically it also includes detailed explanations of creating DPOAs for healthcare, and a comprehensive set of sample forms.
Helpful Answer (0)
Reply to Countrymouse
Report

Are your grandparents worried that if they revoke their (individual) powers of attorney their child would take steps to prevent them?

I think they should just go ahead and do that. There's nothing obvious stopping them; and I agree that there doesn't seem to be any benefit to the alcohol-dependent child in insisting that s/he be retained as healthcare POA.

You're very quick to criticise the POA for taking advice from a friend instead of discussing decisions with the principals, as would be correct. But aren't you doing something rather similar? - or have you tried to discuss your concerns with the POA?

You don't say when your grandfather's brain surgery was, so we also don't know how long the healthcare POA has been their primary caregiver. Recalcitrant and demanding parents can be enough to drive anyone to drink, let alone a recovering alcoholic. When did you grandchildren begin to take over?

Anyway. Ad hominem arguments are rarely the right approach; and with respect if the alcoholism had always been the issue you suggest presumably your parent would have opposed the healthcare POA from the start. Nobody would be so foolish as to suppose a 40 year history of alcohol dependency can be overcome in one go, especially not when the person is then going to be placed under pressure.

Concentrate on your grandparents' best interests and discuss ways forward with them and with your aunt/uncle if at all possible. Clearly it isn't practical for the current deputy (your parent) to take over, so who's volunteering to be given the new POA?

I shouldn't be at all surprised if the aunt/uncle turns out to be very glad to shed this responsibility and allow someone younger and more detached to take over, provided it isn't presented as any kind of failing on her/his part. It's a diplomatic challenge: don't criticise the current POA, focus on the practicalities and the grandchildren's being better placed to manage them - assuming that's the plan.
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to Countrymouse
Report

You can't. The POA is the person assigned by the parents. They can change this to anyone else they may choose at any time as long as they know what they are doing. The POA can "say" anything they want. If the person has not got a diagnosis of dementia, then they can make another choice. IF you grandparents have indicated that the person they designated POA is, in their opinion, unable to do this job for them, then take them to an Elder Law Attorney. This attorney is able to question the grandparents without ANY ONE ELSE IN THE ROOM, to ascertain not that they are PERFECT mentally, but that they understand what they are doing, and why. The papers can be done in the office then. The attorney will even have the ability (WITH permission of the grandparents) to contact their doctor to ask in their presence if he or she has any knowledge that would preclude their changing this important document. I would do this only with an attorney. Anything else could mean a fight. You will first need to be absolutely certain this is what the grandparents wish to do, and that there is no mental deficiency that would not allow them to do it.
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to AlvaDeer
Report
Formyloves Mar 21, 2020
We planned on see an attorney later this month with the child that is first for financial and second for medical to change the medical poa. But with the virus, it put their travel on hold.

We have been worried because the child that is first with medical and their friend has been telling the doctors how they can't take care of themselves and don't remember anything. I've seen the opposite. Like the child says they have an appointment on one day while grandparents have paperwork saying an other day. The child can't remember conversations about what care the grandparents need from the day before.
(0)
Report
If you are willing to be their medical PoA and they are of sound mind, then go to an elder law attorney and have a new PoA completed. If it's done properly it overrides the prior one and your grandparents don't need permission from the prior PoA to make any changes. If you trust the medical secondary and have a good relationship with them I'd consider having your grandparents call to tell them what they intend to do so the secondary doesn't think there's any coercion in play. I don't think any ethical attorney will move forward if they think your grandparents are being coerced or are not capable of understanding what they are doing. If the attorney has concerns, then you can ask the question regarding removing an unfit person as primary PoA. I'm thinking the secondary would take over, but not sure how that transition happens. Also if they are not local it's not the best idea. Your grandparents might consider changing financial PoA also to someone who is local and trustworthy. If they don't have the money for an attorney the PoA forms for their state can be downloaded from legalzoom.com or rocketlawyer.com for under $50. Need 1 original copy per grandparent plus however many PoAs signers there are. Take all parties with the unsigned forms to a bank or notary, with 2 non-related witnesses and make sure everyone has ID with them. Once this is in place you can notify the drunk that his duties are no longer required and make sure all the medical offices are made aware of the change as well. Could the drunk contest this new PoA? Sure, but why would he? He'd have to do it through the courts and what would he gain? You will need to check the laws in your state as they can differ. Good luck!
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to Geaton777
Report
Formyloves Mar 21, 2020
The child that is first for financial and second for medical was going to set up being first for both and have me be second for medical.

The child's(medical first) friend is a paralegal and they have made grandparents' original set of both financial and medical poa disappear. The other child has a set. It's crazy that important things keep disappearing from both of their houses.
(1)
Report

Ask a Question

Subscribe to
Our Newsletter