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Father is in late stages of dementia, recently had a stroke & no POA. He is currently in a skilled nursing home for physical and speech therapy but will be discharged in a little over a week. My mother would like to have him transferred to a Memory Care Facility but cannot access his investments because they are in his name and she cannot afford them without these investments. We are obviously limited to time. What can we do?

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For dementia patients in my state, guardianship petitions are heard in mental health court, not probate.

Guardianship & conservatorship rules vary by state and there is no Universal Guardian in the US right now. It's different everywhere.

If the facility applies for emergency guardianship, you can file your own petition for it as well as a contest to the facility's petition. The court will sort it out and probably decide for the family unless there's a reason you can't pass background checks, & prove you should be guardian.

You will definitely need an attorney's help. The court will appoint another attorney to represent your dad to make sure he really needs a guardian.

This happens VERY often in dementia competency situations, so this is all new to you, not the court or the attorneys who specialize in guardianship.

My advice is to find an attorney who does elder law and guardianship as their main work.
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I know this may not be the time, but be sure that YOU get a POA for your mom...you don't want this to happen twice in your family. This is why POAs are SO important while people are still competent to make their wishes known and get the paperwork signed.
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First I would have a talk with the therapist to see if there is any possibility for dad to be " progressing" in his rehab to possibly get another couple of weeks in the cuuent facility under the Medicare rehab benefit. Like soak with someone ASAP.

If this can be done, it buys you & mom time (as medicare will be paying) to deal with the access to $$$ issues.

So does your mom know what his finances look like? Does she have any of his passwords to get online access to his accounts? Can she or you find statements to figure out where he stands? In other words is there enough info to be able to produce an asset list with account # info?

Does he have a broker? Or was he a go it alone type of investor? Is his investments stocks & more traditional wire house stuff OR did he do more complex investments like reits?

Does he have a life insurance policy with a cash value that either you or mom is the beneficiary of?

I would NOT allow the new LTC facility to place an emergency guardianship. Gladimhere i need to disagree with you on this one. Guardianship imho needs to be either you or your mom. The facility can care less about if your mom has any income & mom is going to need an income stream to pay for her own living expenses. You could find yourself having to fight the facility to get $ for mom. Guardianship gives pretty sweeping powers....what if they liquidate all (they do a full Tplus3) and place all in a escrow account controlled by wherever this facility has its legal dept.....really guardian needs to be family.

You need to find an atty who does guardianships. You can ask friends, social workers, etc......but another way to to go on-line to your parents county courthouse and go onto the recent filings in probate. Guardianship are heard in probate court in most states. When you look at the filings it should indicate who the law firm or atty was. There will be a small list of the same atty names that show up over & over. These are the ones you want to contact to see which can get the emergency guardianship done. Once mom or you becomes guardian, the costs for the atty can be paid from dads assets.

If you let me know the answers on the ?, I may have a suggestion on how to approach some of this.
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You tell the facility that he needs more care than what can be provided at home. Was hospice brought up? If money he has is needed the facility he goes to will probably file for emergency guardianship in order to access his funds. They have had to do this before so will be more helpful than most of us here.

Hopefully, you have started looking at places and found a couple that will provide the best care for him. If not start now! Do not trust the social worker where he is now to make those recommendations. You are going to have to do the foot work.
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