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A few years ago my mom was scammed by romance scammers for about $400k. Her entire savings for retirement is gone. My sister was caring for her until recently when she unexpectedly passed away in April. Now mom wants to move from Alabama to Maine to be closer to my family and her grandkids. She is selling her house to make the move but that won’t be enough to sustain her for many more years as it’s possible she has early onset dementia or frontal lobe dementia. She is still giving money away to guys (her social security checks, money gifted to her from when my sister passed away, etc.) and I need to control her money now. She has agreed and I am the DPOA but she can still revoke that if she gets upset. Is there a way legally she can give me control of her finances that won’t allow her to change her mind later? A 5 year look back would be detrimental to her right now and we can’t support her when her money runs out. Is a court my only option to try? Thank you for taking the time to read this. I know it’s long but it’s only the tip of the iceberg. Have a great day.

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Thank you everyone for your responses. They have all been very helpful. I have an appointment with a lawyer, through legal zoom, on Thursday to see what option works best in Alabama and will switch over to Maine pretty easily. Thank y’all again for taking the time to provide advice.
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Reply to RossW2020
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Sorry, on second thoughts - you can always put your mother's money in a dedicated bank account for her and then just not tell her the number, of course. She can ask, she can insist, and if she goes to law then you will have to give her access to her own property; but you'll have put obstacles in the way of her chucking her cash down the drain, and it would be a quick fix. Get it in writing from her, properly witnessed, that this is what she agrees to.
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Reply to Countrymouse
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Court won't help you. If your mother is mentally competent she cannot give away her right to make her own decision about who will represent her, and the court won't do it for her either.

What are her care needs? You say your sister was caring for her - and I'm very sorry for your family's loss - but what can't your mother manage for herself? (apart from not picking low-lifes, I mean.)
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Isthisrealyreal Jun 20, 2020
CM, yes you can do this in the USA. it is not through the courts, it is a legal contract and it is intended to protect people from themselves in the event that they go mental and start doing self damaging behavior.

I know, I have one for my parents in the event they start giving away their living.
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You can have an attorney draw it up and have a stipulation that covers a mental health POA, these are not revocable when someone has a fit of anger. I would ensure that it covers any state she may be in, the attorney will know how to word it to ensure it crosses state lines. www.nelf.org is a great place to find a certified elder law attorney.

You can also tell mom that you will not be helping her at all if she doesn't allow you to help with the finances. She doesn't need to think that you are taking control, this is usually a non starter for people. Once you get agreement then you can arrange things in a way that protects her assets but gives her a weekly allowance for necessities and to spend as she pleases.

Best of luck, this buying love seems to be a common problem with so many seniors.
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Reply to Isthisrealyreal
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If you currently have DPoA, then take her to the doc and have them give her a cognitive exam. Once a dementia Dx is in her records there is likely no more wiggle room for her to change anything. Laws can differ from state to state, so check your state laws (if she moves to ME). Mild cognitive decline may still allow her to change arrangements but if you think she has ALZ, this should be confirmed through a neurologist that specializes in this, or geriatrician, gerontologist. A specific Dx will also help you to know what the trajectory of her illness will most likely be, and how to best help her. You are bravely doing a difficult thing. Please remember your own family comes first, so your spouse must also be on board with what you're planning. You should read more on this forum to get a feel for how intense caregiving can get for the both of you. I wish you all the best!
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Reply to Geaton777
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I second the advice to talk to an Eldercare Attorney.
You could also ask about seeking Guardianship.
I am sure she would not want to do this willingly (if she knew what was going on) you would have to have a doctor state that she is not cognizant. But this would be the only way that you would have control without her being able to reverse the POA.
The question is to do it now where she is so you would have to be very involved in the sale of the house. (and I will tell you selling a house or any property as a Guardian for your Ward it is more difficult than just a sale) Or do you seek Guardianship once she moves to Maine. (beautiful state by the way. & home to Largest Whirlpool in the Western Hemisphere!)
Since you would have most of your dealings in Maine I would consult with an Attorney there first.
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Reply to Grandma1954
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I would call an Elder Care Attorney (in Alabama) and I believe you would have to travel to Alabama in order for your Mom to sign the paperwork for you to become her full POA which should be done ASAP.

I had to travel out of state to get financial and medical POA for my Mom. Luckily the real estate agent I hired to sell my Mom's house knew of an excellent elder care attorney who took care of all the paperwork.

Hope this helps,
Jenna
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