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I believe mom is incompetent, but she puts up a good front. She is very believable but lacks executive functions and has her own version of reality. She distrusts us since we told her that she has dementia. Since she can't make up her own mind and forgets that she has trusted people taking care of her, she seeks the advice of strange attorneys. Her own long-time estate planning attorney will testify that mom is incompetent. I don't want to get guardianship because that will emotionally destroy her. How can I stop the attorneys that stroll through the nursing homes looking for their next ... client? Can I get a restraining order against the attorneys?

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If these are delusions & hallucinations, then her doctor needs to know to tweak meds or something.

You will probably also hear that everybody is an impostor at some point too. That is another dementia thing that's very common.
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Patty, how do you know that attorneys are roaming the nursing home halls? Is this something your Mom is saying?

If yes, I would take what she says with a grain of salt since your profile says she has Alzheimer's/Dementia and any time she sees someone in a suit, she might think that person is an attorney, when in fact they could be clergy or a doctor.

I've sat in the common area with my Mom and hear all sorts of things the other patients are saying if they see someone they don't know. It's like watching a reality version of the old TV show "What's My Line?" them guess who is that person and what do they do.
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Get the guardianship before it is too late. If she is her own guardian she is free to decide to use any lawyer who flatters her into it, and to shut you out totally while they spend every last bit of her money. You do need the doctor's letters of incapacity but you have a good attorney on your side - DO use their help while they can offer it.
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HOLY SMOKES -

The facility needs to put a stop to this nonsense. You need to write everybody you can get names and email addresses for. If the facility won't play ball and do the right thing, by NOT ALLOWING STRANGERS OPEN ACCESS TO VULNERABLE RESIDENTS, then I would be in contact with my local news channel and the Better Business Bureau, DHS, and anybody else with any tiny bit of overseeing or governance of a NH.

That is completely unimaginable - forget about the attorney part - the fact that strange people can enter your mother's room unaccompanied and unregistered is a gigantic problem for me. If the facility doesn't understand the liability they have on their hands with this, then I'd put mom somewhere else lickety split. There has never been a time in my mother's life in a NH where anybody - especially strange men - had free & open access to her. That is BAD NEWS right there.

If she is in an independent living type of unit, then those residents are to still have the faculties required to live on one's own (mostly). If she is in a true nursing home setting, then the general public should not be traipsing in at will. Especially if they are not family or friends.

The person in your family who has powers of attorney needs to take control immediately. Mom will not have any access to checks, cash, debit cards, credit cards ASAP.

If you want to make sure that anything she signs will not be binding or legal, then you are going to have to have her declared mentally incompetent. She does not need to know this. I have had to do a lot of things for my mother to ensure her safety that I would not have done years ago before she lost touch with reality and the ability to perform at normal cognition. This is what it means to become a caregiver. You have to own the burden of taking action, even if it's something they might not like or prefer, or even allow were they in their right mind. But they aren't, so you have to step in.

Have the facility social worker and her physician create "A Physician's Statement of Mental Incapacity" ASAP or faster. If they work with dementia patients at all, they will know what this is and not protest creating it. Don't tell your mother you are doing this to protect her. You can't tell her absolutely everything anymore because of the dementia. She can no longer provide guidance and input to things like this, so don't stress her out with it.

Go to this site - all one word - the law dictionary dot org. Search for " How to Legally Declare Someone as Mentally Incompetent". You would have to go through this to become a guardian anyway.

You can fake out the visitors in the mean time by posting a notice on her door that says "resident has no legal signing authority". That might scare them away since she wouldn't be such an easy mark.

I'm just gobsmacked a facility would allow strangers in.
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Sunnygirl makes a good point. It's not only attorneys that draft estate plans. There are some very unscrupulous outfits - I learned that some of these people prowl the RV parks where snowbirds winter in Texas. Another hit on my parents and snowed them. I had to really get aggressive and threaten with everything I had to get their money returned to them.

They use aggressive salespeople, then turn the legal drafting over to an attorney. Based on the amount the attorney was charging, I'm guessing she had just passed the bar but was unemployed and desperate.

These might be the prowlers that are snooping around the nursing home. And I think it's more likely them; other than ambulance chasers, attorneys usually don't go out hunting for clients.
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It might be sensitive matter, but I would go ahead and take some action to take control of her finances. She is skating on thin ice. As long as she is calling the shots, she could make some very poor financial decisions and then all of you would have to deal with it. Even if you discover it and try to fix it, the money could be lost or it might take a lot of work to do it.

I wouldn't take the chance that you can shield her from unscrupulous people at all times. I would hope an attorney wouldn't do her harm, but someone posing as an attorney could.
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First of all, if it us in your mom's best interest for you to get guardianship, then that's EXACTLY what you do. How lame it sounds that protecting her interests would emotionally destroy her.

The fact that her long-time atty "will testify" means nothing. He is not a competency expert. That's a doctor's purview.

I have NEVER IN MY LIFE heard of attorneys prowling the halls of nursing homes looking for business. EVER. Talk about malpractice suits waiting to happen...

Only thing I can think of is that your mom is asking the nursing home to see an Atty.

You can tell the nursing home that youbelieveshe us incompetent and that they are not the same to intro any attys to mom, but unless they agree with you that she is incompetent? You have no standing.

Get guardianship if you can prove she's incompetent. If she is NOT incompetent, you have no right to keep her from attys even if she intends to change her will.
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Patty, I had no idea that there was a variety of attorneys worse than ambulance chasers, i.e., those who search out potential clients in nursing homes. This is despicable.

I don't know if you can get a restraining order without one of them having harassed your mother. And given your mother's dementia, there would have to be witnesses to the attorney's attempt to solicit.

But what you might try is a clipboard with a sign-up notice for client prowlers. Ask them to leave their cards. Then call the state bar and complain that they're coffin chasing.

Another alternative is to put a note on the door that no attorneys are allowed in that room. I don't know if it will work, but it might.

I think I would also talk to the nursing home administration and voice your objection to allowing these people to prowl the halls looking for clients. This is really, really low class.
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