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When my grandma died, she left a large inheritance for my sister and I. I had no relationship with my grandma or that side of the family. I really feel bad and like a hypocrite because of my personal beliefs but my aunt, uncle and father had a family meeting and are contesting none of it even though they pretty much got nothing in comparison. My aunt took care of every aspect of my grandmas care and visited her daily even though my grandma was just not a pleasant person. Based on my caregiving experiences, I believe she got screwed. I have been composing a letter to her but nothing really sounds right. I want to get her some type of gift or a vacation or something to let her know her actions were appreciated. I really know nothing about her except she likes gardening flowers. Any suggestions?

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The Chelsea Flower show was the gardening thing she wanted to go to. I am flying her and her husband for a couple months to England and Ireland. She kept picking cheap lodging, so I upgraded. I guess I feel better wiring spending money to a nice hotel rather than a dump.
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Tacy, I hope my response isn't too late. It sounds as though your aunt would like to see the Chelsea Flower Show in London. If she loves gardening, then this is the ultimate gardening event, a "bucket list" experience that she will remember always. If there is any way you can make it happen for her, please do. Of course, giving her money would be nice, but giving her this experience may mean much more.
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This is great that you want to help - I would consult with an elder attorney to see what you can set up without having to pay a gift tax or something.
My cousin passed away and had a great caregiver. He was in the process of changing his will to give her his home since he was divorced and no kids.
He passed away before he could do it and rich relatives got everything - and this lady could have really used the home and money.
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I think, follow your heart. In this case whatever you want to give is appropriate. And I believe the sooner the better. A favorite saying of a friend is, "If not now, when?"
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Many caregivers employed in facility settings are not allowed to accept "gifts" (particularly money) as part of their code of conduct and may jeopardize their employment. They may usually only accept perishables and gifts of nominal value ($50 or less, but not actual cash). It is preferred that gifts are shared with other associates. My facility usually encourages families who want to give something to provide lunch, dessert, etc.
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My husband and I actually gave persons who had gone above and beyond the call of duty to assist my late mother gift cards WHILE MY MOTHER WAS STILL LIVING. These people really deserved even more than we gave! They were truly Godsends!
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Call her up and ask her if she'd like you to treat her to the trip to the flower show. You might find that she's a delightful person you'd like to have in your life.
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I had planned on setting up a trust to care for her and her husband's care when they get older. I just thats the right thing to do but I figured after caregiving she might want to do something before they arent able to do anything. She mentioned something about some over hundred year old flower show in England but I didnt know if thats too much for someone you dont really know.
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I am doing the same thing, my late Dad had two wonderful caregivers who treated him like he was part of their family.... I felt they deserve something for their kind work and devotion to him. The two women were with Dad over a year. They both went above and beyond, especially when Dad was placed under Hospice.

Thus, this Christmas I gave them each a check for the holidays along with a Thank You type Christmas card. I do plan to gift them another check later down the road. They were my life line :)
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The gift should be whatever you feel like giving, but the most important part of it would be letting this person know how you feel and appreciate the care given to your grandma. Caregiving is often a thankless job and just feeling appreciated would go a long way. Write a note and let it come from the heart and enclose whatever feel you think is good. I am a retired nurse and I treasure all the notes that were given to me from family members. I saw many home health patients that did not have money, but just knowing that someone cared what I did was priceless. You mentioned this person enjoyed gardening, so maybe a gift certificate would be nice from a home and gardening store. If you are considering a much larger amount I would just enclose the cash. Don't feel guilt about what your grandma left you, as I am sure she did what she wanted to do. Acknowledge to the other person that caring for her was priceless.
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My initial thoughts in a similar situation were to give the unacknowledged person 1/3 of the inheritance, but that would require cooperation from your sister. In my case the Executor was a third party that would only follow the written directions, and I later discovered there were long standing hidden reasons the Will was written as it was. I still feel a level of guilt about it though.
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You can gift to her up to $14,000 per year without taxes.

Or, you could give her any amount above that, and just pay the taxes as part of the gift.
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Tacy, how substantial? Could you arrange an account that would give her an income?
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