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I am the care giver for my Mother who was diagnosed with Dementia about 5 years ago. I am married and have been retired for 4 years. My beloved Father recently passed away two weeks ago while he was living with my Mom in an Assisted Living Facility (ALF) where they were both very happy. I moved my parents into the ALF by myself with no help from my sister. The reason she would not help with them is because she wanted them in a Nursing home so that she can pocket their money, her inheritance, which she has been hiding in her account for over 10 years. I still have my POA for both of my parents which I have had for 8 years. My sister went behind my back and had another POA signed 3 days ago. At the same time, she opened up a checking account with only my Mom and sisters name on the account. They probably had a living will drawn up, too. Not sure how ethical it is to be a witness for an 84 year old women, with advanced Dementia, sign papers for a POA. One day after Mom signed the POA, she could not tell me the name of her POA.


I never really asked my Sister to produce the money and put it into a separate account until my father passed away and that is what started this chain of events that totally blindsided me. Yesterday, I videotaped my Mom saying that 1) she loves the ALF she is in now and wants to stay there, 2) she does not want to live with me or my sister, 3) she did not know what the paper meant that she signed 2 days ago (referring to the POA), 4) she did not know who her power of attorney is right now, and 5) she did not know what day it is. Today, the manager at the ALF told me that my sister found out that I videotaped my Mom and proceeded to fly into a rage. My sister said Mom won’t be staying here from now on and this is her 30 days notice. The Manager told me that my Mom was crying and trying to say good-by to her friends but my sister wouldn’t let her and was yelling to get in the car because she was leaving the ALF for good and didn’t have time for this. The Manager told me that she was even crying herself because my poor Mom had just lost her husband and now my sister is making her leave her friends and the “safe place” that she now knows as home. Now I am heartbroken that I cannot see my Mom and I am in shock and disbelief that my sister is pulling this stunt. My sister works 3-4 days a week and is only holding my Mom hostage until she can dump her into a Nursing home so she can take Mom’s money for her inheritance. Yesterday, I waited almost 24 hours to see if my sister would drop off my Mom at the ALF and she has not. I texted her yesterday and she will not tell me where my Mom is living. She only told me “Mom wants to be closer to home. I’ll let you know when we find a facility.” The ALF Mom is only 45 minutes from my sisters house.


The rent is paid up at the ALF until the end of the month. How do I get my sister to put my Mom back in the ALF? My sister is not talking to either my husband or myself since I asked about the money. Does anyone know if there are Elder Care services that will talk to my sister about fulfilling my Mom’s wishes to stay in the ALF? Do I need to contest her POA or just disregard it? Will I get in trouble if I find my Mom and bring her to my house? Please help, I need advice right away.

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Call APS, stat.

This is a crisis and your mother is at risk of harm. Ask them to call the manager at the ALF so that they understand exactly what took place from an official source.

The whole family has just been devastated by the loss of your father. I'm sorry that it's having such terrible repercussions for all of you; but try not to panic. God willing this will all get sorted out and you'll be able to put it behind you.

Your poor, poor mother, and poor all of you. Please let us know what's happening, and good luck.
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ChattyCathy77 Apr 3, 2019
Thank you for the advice. I am going to the Dr’s office in an hour to get a copy of her notes on Mom regarding Dementia. I want to be able to provide APS with all of the paperwork so they know what they are up against and not have to dig for anything.
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There’s no way anything your mom signed while having advanced dementia is valid. It won’t stand up. Agree with calling APS, and also an elder care attorney for advice. So sorry this is happening, please let us know what you learn
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Reply to Daughterof1930
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I agree call APS.

You need to find out who drew up the POA. Yours needed to be revolked. If a lawyer, he should be told Mom was deemed incompetent. If she did it off the internet and didn't have witnesses and a notary present when Mom signed, I doubt its any good,

If sister tries to get Mom in a NH, she will have to pay privately or file for Medicaid. If she files for Medicaid she is going to have to show financials back 5 years. Mom will not get Medicaid if it shows money has been transferred or large amounts drawn out with no back up. So sister will be stuck unless she pays back the money.
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So here’s the latest update. I called APS and reported the kidnapping on April 3. My sister kidnapped my Mom on April 1 from the ALF. APS called me back the next day and they told me that someone reported on April 1 that I was mentally and verbally abusing my mother. That I was yelling at her. APS is investigating. I told APS to see the manager at the ALF and they’ll attest to my sister pulling my Mom out while she was confused and crying. Since then I found out that my sister placed my Mom in an ALF/Nursing home called the Atrium in Metairie, La. I went to the Atrium with my Aunt to see my Mother and the Office worker would not buzz us into the facility. It is a locked down facility. The worker told me that my sister had a new POA and a restraining order on me and my Aunt. The office worker told me that only 2 people are on the list to see my Mom. My attorney checked and neither one of us has a restraining order.

My Attorney sent the following letter to my sister: Be advised that I represent Cathy, who I understand is your sister. Cathy and others, including the personnel at your Mother’s residence in Slidell at Azalea Assisted Living, have been told that you have Power of Attorney for your Mother. Despite requests, no one has produced a copy of that POA to Cathy. You have allegedly used that POA to remove your Mother from Azalea against her wishes and the wishes of Cathy. I am also advised that you have taken your Mother to The Atrium Assisted Living in Metairie and have placed her in that residence using the Power of Attorney. Cathy has been told that you have also obtained a Protective Order, restraining Cathy, her aunt Margaret and Cathy’s husband JD from any contact with your Mother. Cathy nor the others have been served with any such Order. Cathy has had the Power of Attorney and has cared for your Mother (and deceased Father) for the past 8 years plus, and these recent actions by you are unacceptable. It is my understanding that the POA and Protective Order (if issued) have been obtained fraudulently under false pretenses. Cathy would like to resolve this dispute with you on amicable terms, but she will not stand for the current situation. Be advised that unless the Protective Order is immediately terminated, if it exists, she will file for its dissolution and for the annulment of your Power of Attorney. She will seek damages resulting from your actions. She will also seek a full accounting of your parents’ funds that have been in your care, and will seek reimbursement for any funds missing.  

My sister’s attorney wrote that he saw my Mom and Sister and gave them a new POA. He had a note from my Mom’s doctor saying that she was found competent “to pick where she wanted to live”, not that she was competent for any thing else. Sisters attorney stated that he is not aware of a restraining order on me. He wrote that after my visit to the Atrium that the Atrium office worker called protective services and that they sent someone to see my mother and that she told them that she did not want to see me. Now they are going to put something in place where I can’t see my Mom.

I have not seen my Mom in 22 days. I called APS on Thursday and told them that I want a supervised visit with my Mother and why would my sister wait until my Dad died to report me for abusing my Mom. Still waiting on call from APS after 4 days. I am sick over this whole thing. My lawyer said that since she has a new POA that I would have to hire a Dr. and bring my sister to court. My sister took the money out my parents account in 2008/2009 so we’ll probably never find it. My lawyer is waiting to see what I want to do. I’m not sure how much this is going to cost me. Does anyone know how I can get a supervised visit with my Mom? Know of any avenues to take without paying Attorney fees and going to court? How can I find out if Medicare is paying the new facility?
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APS is pretty much your only recourse without going to court and if you are going to court then you really should hire an attorney. Were you able to get a copy of the doctor's notes on your mother's dementia? Is the doctor willing to write a new letter stating your mother is incompetent to sign a new POA?

Unfortunately, it's probably going to come down to the doctor's statement of your mother's competence. Since the doctor started this ball rolling by writing a letter saying your mother was competent to determine where she lived, she may not be willing to write a letter of general incompetence now. APS may take some time to investigate, document, and render a decision but you will most likely get at least visiting privileges to your mother eventually.
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Take deep breaths and hold tight.

The investigation that APS opened into alleged abuse on the first of April is ongoing, yes? Your counter-allegation of kidnapping will probably form part of that.

Have you been told when you can expect this investigation to report back?

When you have its conclusions, you will be in a much better position to negotiate supervised contact with your mother. When you have that, the supervisor being ideally from the APS that most recently interviewed your mother, you will be much better placed to demonstrate that your mother's previous reluctance to see you was the result of coercion.

It's a long, long process; but fix your eyes on the outcome you want.

How much confidence do you have in your lawyer? It's better to stick to one who's familiar with the history, as long as you're satisfied.

Competent to decide where you live is, of course, not equivalent to competent to understand the implications of a power of attorney. Your lawyer doesn't see grounds to challenge the validity of your sister's POA?

Have you considered and/or discussed a guardianship application?
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A little progress today. APS closed the case. She said that Mom is safe, in a good environment, and her needs are being met. There were no signs of abuse from me, as my sister originally reported. Apparently, that is the extent of what they do. I asked about a supervised visit, they don’t handle that, and then asked about moving Mom back in the ALF she was in before she was kidnapped, they don’t handle that either. 

I wrote the Dr. telling her the following: My sister asked you to report on my Mother’s capacity to choose where she wants to live. You showed that she had the capacity to choose where she would like to live. My sister is using your note for another purpose, other than what you specified.

I am asking you to report on my Mother’s capacity to understand and sign a legal document, specifically a Power of Attorney, within 7 days of visiting you. In your report dated August 22, 2019, the mini mental status exam showed that she could not recall the date or the year. She also could not recall the 3 words told to her, spell the word world backwards, and write a short sentence. In your opinion, would she be able to fully understand and execute a POA within 7 days of this testing? Please let me know.

Called Medicare and they would not talk to me regarding if an application is being placed through them to pay for Mom’s new facility.

My Attorney told me last week, when we found out that Mom had a new POA, that I would have to hire a Dr. for an assessment of my Mom and then take my sister to court. Heard this will cost 10K+ so not sure I can foot this bill.

This site has been right on with steering me in the right direction and the steps I need to take on my own.

Looking for advice on how to visit Mom when she is in a locked down facility and my sister has already coerced my Mom to say she doesn’t want to see me.  

Thinking of having the Lawyer have her account for the funds transferred out of my Father’s account when she did not have power of attorney and then I will ask that they be transferred into a trust account for my Mom.

Any suggestions??
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I am glad to hear that your “Mom is safe, in a good environment, and her needs are being met.”  Maybe your Mom does NOT need to be moved back to the ALF that she was in previously.  Maybe this facility is appropriate for your Mom since she is safe and her needs are being met.

In regards to the supervised visits, I would suggest MEDIATION either through the LOUISIANA STATE LONG-TERM CARE OMBUDSMAN PROGRAM website:  http://goea.louisiana.gov/index.cfm?md=pagebuilder&tmp=home&pid=107&pnid=2&nid=15

Or a medication company/organization such as:
Maps Mediation Arbitration Professional Systems Inc
3850 N Causeway Blvd, Ste 400 / Two Lakeway Center / Metairie, LA 70002 Jefferson County
 (504) 831-2141
https://maps-adr.com/mediation/

The Social Service Assistant at the LTC facility that my Mom was in thought that I was doing something wrong regarding my Mom’s finances so the SS Assistant ordered that my visits with my Mom had to be supervised.  And the SS Assistant helped Mom to change her POA from me to our family attorney.  I had to hire an attorney and petition for guardianship and conservatorship of Mom.  After 4 months of meetings between the various attorneys, Mom’s Court Ordered “Attorney Ad Litem” decided that Mom did not know what she was doing when she changed her POA from me to our family attorney and thus revoked Mom’s change of POA and returned Mom’s POA to me.  After I was renamed as Mom’s POA, I had to contact the State Ombudsman to help me get my supervised visits discontinued.  It did cost approximately $12,000 in attorney fees for our family attorney, Mom's Attorney Ad Litem and for my attorney because I petitioned for guardianship and conservatorship.

Hope that these suggestions are helpful.  Glad to hear that your Mom is in a safe place and that you were found "Not Guilty" of any abuse.
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When you say “Medicare”, do you really mean Medicaid? Because Medicare doesn’t pay for assisted living. So if you do in fact mean Medicare, they aren’t paying for your mom’s room & board in AL.
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ChattyCathy77 Apr 24, 2019
Thank you for catching that. Yes, I meant Medicaid.
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I really appreciate your advice DeeAnna. I had no idea a court battle takes that long but I did read that the costs are over 10K and you just confirmed that. I am going to contact the Ombudsman for the ALF and see if I can get supervised visits. My sister was ready to stick a feeding tube in my Mom’s stomach about a year ago because she wasn’t eating; however, she was thriving and gaining weight while I had her in the ALF. I am concerned with all this drama that Mom is not eating and will start losing weight again and my sister will be quick to stick the feeding tube into her stomach this time. I’m afraid that will be the demise of my Mom. Also, waiting on Mom’s Dr to reply. Thanks, Cathy
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The 4 months were "The Investigation Phase" with the various attorneys talking to Mom, my brother and myself, and the LTC staff about Mom's situation and why she changed her POA.

During the fourth month, the attorneys wanted to develop a solution that was best for my Mom without having to appoint a guardian and a conservator.  If an agreement had not been reached, I would have spent another 2-3 months completing the required forms/letters (8+ of them) and would have had to spend another $10,000 to be bonded (as the conservator) because Mom owned a farm and had "Life Estate" of another farm.  At the meeting when the attorneys asked my Mom who she wanted as her Power of Attorney and have control of her money, she tried to wheel herself out of the room and was crying "Ask Dee, Ask Dee, Ask Dee."  It was heartbreaking.

All of this because a Social Service Assistant became emotionally involved and thought that she knew more about my Mom than the nursing staff, the Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, the Social Service Director, our family doctor, our family attorney, and Mom's family.
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If your mother has any money, most of the conservator costs will be paid by her. If you are granted conservatorship, most states allow the conservator to be reimbursed from the principal's monies for the cost of obtaining the conservatorship. The guardian ad litum the court will appoint to investigate your mother's situation and interview everyone in the family will most likely be a lawyer and all his/her time will be billed and paid by your mother. The guardian ad litum will be able to access all your mother's financial and medical records as well as the APS reports. If your mother has assets that are not liquid, the court may order them sold to fund the conservatorship costs.

Winning a conservatorship petition requires: (1) proving Mom is incompetent and needs a conservator, statement from Mom's doctor is good but you can use another doctor for an assessment during the conservatorship process; and (2) that you are the best conservator choice (letters from ALF, other family members, Mom's friends, etc would be helpful to show you have taken care of her in the past), your sister's past bad deeds that you can _prove_ are also helpful.
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I just came from my attorneys office and he has referred me to an Elder care attorney. He basically said that I will have to either hire a Dr. or get affidavits from her current Dr’s and file a petition with the court to annul my sister’s POA. He mentioned that it will take 10K+ and more than 2 months. That’s just to annul the POA, not to search for the money.

The problem with the court using my Mother’s money to pay for this is that my Sister took the money out of my Mom’s account over 11 years ago and placed it in her account. So it will take an act of God to find the money. Other than that, my Mother does not have any other assets.

I did not get a call back from the Ombudsman today, but I am doubtful that she will not be able to help me based on her comments on our initial call yesterday.

I wonder if if I can find someone to get the affidavits from my Mom’s current Dr’s and file them in court at a reduced rate??
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worriedinCali Apr 25, 2019
If you have to go the guardianship route, there may be financial assistance available if mom doesn’t have the money. The courts will have information about it for you. If I recall correctly, there is usually a special fund for those who cannot afford guardianship costs, or there will be reduced fees. But hopefully it doesn’t come down to this, hopefully the ombudsman can help you. Good luck!
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I would think that you could file for an injunction or something that would at least prevent your sister from removing mom from the place she has been living for (5 years is it?) and make any changes to financial accounts or payments, basically leaving things status quo while which POA takes precedent is determined. As long as you are approaching it from a place of whats safest and best for mom, no hint of retaliation against sister or trying to shut her out, let it be obvious based on facts who has mom's welfare in mind and who has her money in mind.

I would file a request saying she wants to stay in the place she has made home with her recently deceased husband, has established friends and a social network as well as is happy and safely looked after, she can and has been affording it and moving her out and then back in (if even possible) would add the stress of moves as well as possibly lessen her options in the future (should she run out of funds and need to go on Medicaid she might be able to stay wherever she currently resides because she has met self pay requirements but if she starts all over that might not be the case). I would also include a copy of the POA drawn up 7 years ago, her diagnosis 5 years ago, any pertinent banking info, a copy of the POA drawn up 3 days ago if you have it as well as the bank account changed the same day and if you can get a statement or something from the attorney who drew stuff up for mom and dad 7 years ago. I'm not sure it will be easy to get but if someone from the residential living she was taken from will make a statement about that it might help but I wouldn't wait for this or the attorney, that's all stuff you will want to collect for the case. Remember by filing for some sort of injunction you are suspending your rights to manage her money etc too but if she is back where she has been and the money is funneling the same way (so back to ground zero of 5 days ago) you don't really need to do anything and it's to your advantage that your willing to share responsibility or lack of with sis until it's resolved (so your not looking to get access to money). I see you talked to an attorney who told you this would be an expensive venture but for 1 if you can get mom back to her good place at least she is safe and happy with an injunction preventing your sister from any more damage, you have some time and 2. I'm guessing your sister might elect not to pursue all of this and either mediate or just play nicer in general to even avoid that because it's going to cost her a lot of money too. Make her blink first, you are watching out for Mom which puts you in a firmer place to make a stand, IMHO.
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ChattyCathy77 Apr 29, 2019
It’s too late for an injunction. My sister has already changed all accounts, put her in a locked down place, the Atrium, and got a new POA. She also would not let the crematory give me my Dad’s ashes or his death certificate. I had to go to the court house and get a death certificate. I also had to clean out my Mom’s room yesterday from Azalea Assisted Living since I can’t have her placed back in there. Not expecting any help from local or state agencies. The Ombudsman has not returned my call either and told me to get a lawyer. Either I come up with 10K to start the process or let my sister win.
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Call the police!!!
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ChattyCathy77 Apr 29, 2019
I did call the police early on and the policeman said so why are you calling us and didn’t want to get involved. I had the police meet me at the new place my sister put my Mom in and the office manager told me and my Aunt that we had restraining orders on both of us, which we did not. The policeman told us that they did not have to let him in the door either and they did not need to show him any paperwork but if they had a restraining order on us that he would have to serve us. We told the policeman that we were going to check with the lawyer and 2 parishes on restraining orders. There were no restraining orders on me or my Aunt. My sister lied to the office manager at the home. I’m not getting any help from State or Local agencies they say to call a lawyer.
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You do have a policeman as a witness that your sister gave false information to the Office Manager. He heard the Office Manager explain that there was a restraining order in force. You can show that this was not true. The Office Manager can show that she believed it to be true based on information provided by your sister.

Gosh this is such a heck of a mess, though.

I'm thinking it should be possible to make the current nursing home very very nervous about whose side they're on. If they continue to rely on information provided by your sister after it has been shown to be false, and because of it deny your mother contact with her child -

You need a lawyer.

Get your goals lined up in order. What do you want to achieve, and what are the steps you need to follow? One at a time.
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You need to report this to the Department of family and children Elder abuse hotline at call 1-800-962-2873  or file on line.
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After reading all the replies below, I think you need to brief one family law lawyer to speak on your behalf and to help you interact with the authorities. There may well be a another way than the threatened $10K court case, as usually this will have to be preceded by an attempt to reach an amicable solution (ie not in front of a judge).

If it then becomes clear that your sister is after your mother's money, it may be easier to charge her with fraud, making her an unreliable person to be in charge of her mother's affairs.

Just be ready to look at all angles. Any good lawyer would, for far less than $10K.
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Try to not make your mom the pawn in this dysfunction. I would be angry too. Each move will cause further decline in your mom. She may not remember the place she lived before by now. As long as she is well cared for is all that matters.

As far as sis and the money from years ago, that will never be recovered. How would sis get mom's money now? If mom is on Medicaid or even has applied for it the program will audit mom's accounts for any money that may have been transferred to anyone for the past five years. So, sis may very well be caught in her own scheme of using/taking mom's money for anything other than mom's benefit.

Have you thought about contacting the district attorney? I have no idea if this would help in your situation or not.
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ChattyCathy77 May 2, 2019
In order to do anything will take a lawyer and money. This is very exhausting and i am not getting any help from public services. I need to look at other angles before letting it all go. I going to take a minute to grieve for my father and take care of myself.

I contacted the DA who told me to get a police escort to the Atrium. The policeman asked me why am I contacting him. He said oh yeah, throw us into the middle of this, what am I supposed to do?The ombudsman has not returned my call but basically told me to go other routes. The money will not be recovered unless I can come up with a silver bullet. Stupid me for trusting my sister.
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CC, the answer to the, er, helpful policeman was to grit your teeth, smile sweetly, and say "you are supposed to accompany me in order to keep the peace and enable me to go about my legitimate business without interference. Which your authority as a police officer will ensure. As advised by your District Attorney. Will Monday suit you?"
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worriedinCali May 2, 2019
You don’t ask the police officer if Monday will work for him. That’s not how it works in the US. You call when you are ready for the civil standby and the officer assigned to that jurisdiction responds. You don’t then ask him if Monday works because he can’t schedule anything. Whoever is working that area when the standby is needed, is who they send. So when she spoke to him by phone, all she had to do was explain why she needed a standby and if she was ready at that time, then they meet at the facility. If she wasn’t ready, she’d Have to call back when she is ready.
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