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My sister is in charge of all her finances and refuses to get me some help with caring for my mother. What do I do?

Take her to court get a good elder care attorney she cannot with-Hold care and your mothers money is meant for that care. She has to provide or surrender her POA this could be considered abuse tell her that she may be POA but that does not mean that she can do nothing and spend her money as she wants she has to prove that the money is spent to upkeep your mother. Legal aid has a new elder care grant call and talk with them.
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Reply to Dvinsant123
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Take her to court.
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Reply to MonodbBart
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I have zero respect for your no-good sister. Because I have a no-good brother.

Do SOMETHING! Take some of this advice and get out from under this pressure.
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Reply to OhMyMe2
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Have your mom hire a caregiver who can spell you once a week and send the bill to your sister.
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Reply to lynina2
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Not a lot of info here as to whether you live with your mother?  Can your mother do anything at all?  Contact an Elder attorney as to what you can do about the situation.  However, your mother should not be abandoned as a result of a "non helpful sibling".  IF something would happen you would feel guilty, which you don't want to happen.  As suggested, maybe send a certified contract (don't know if elder attorney could help write it up) as to what you are going to do and how often.  She will need to hire someone else OR she can step in and help.  Give a specific timeframe in which to be contacted back with agreement, etc of the contract.  After that......if she does not respond, report your sister for elder abuse to office of aging, and any other official office.  You might even want to include the possibility of her being reported for elder abuse.  Wishing you luck.
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Reply to wolflover451
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Sos you are very near burnout and need to do something. My advise is to threaten this no good sister by saying what she’s doing is elder abuse. Because it is. She has control of your mother’s finances and is denying her care. NO one, no judge can expect one person to be a caregiver 24/7. Get your ducks in row and go after her. This is crazy what she’s doing. It cruel and inhumane. This has gone on too long. Stand up to her. If it makes you feel better talk to an elder Atty but don’t retain because this is open and shut.
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Reply to PatienceSD
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Sos208: Imho, you could contact the Montgomery County, PA Council on Aging at 215-784-5413 to discuss your situation, i.e. that you need help to care for your mother. I believe that you are a male caring for your mother and you are in need of desperate help. I have verified that this is the correct phone number. Good luck to you.
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Reply to Llamalover47
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Just inform her that she has responsibility to help care for her mother.

If she refuses inform your moms doctor that you are no longer her care giver (put it in writing and have the doctor sign it with you getting a copy for legal reasons .Here if you just leave you can be charged with elder abuse and reckless abandonment). Then inform your sister your mom is her responsibility not yours.

They are both complacent in abusing you.
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Reply to Christservant
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You should be commended for all the love & support that you've given your mom. If sis is POA she should be paying you for the care that you provide. Whatever you decide to do, document everything. I agree that you should send a hand written contract by certified mail to your sis about what hours & care you are willing to do for free or be paid for, along with conditions such as regular time off, sick days, etc. that will start on a specific date like about 2 weeks. Tell her that she needs to respond the same with signed contact or you will no longer provide care for your mom. You can check in with an elder care attorney about the house changing names as mom may need the house to be sold to provide care or AL. You may or may not inform your sis of your intentions. Remember you are trying to get fair help that your mom deserves, not saving money for sis' inheritance. Good luck with helping your mom! 💜
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Reply to ToniFromRVA
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So sorry to hear your under such stress . Your sister is proving all she cares about is what money will be left after your mother goes home. She won’t give you the help you need because of that. It happens in a lot of families. This may sound terrible but you need to step back and tell her your done it’s her time to step up and care for her mother . It should not all be on your shoulders while she sits back and refuses to get you help . I know you love your mother you have more than proven that. You should not feel guilty at all . It will be hard but if you don’t make a move your sister has no reason to do anything . I pray you have strength to help your self also. If you get sick and run down then who’s going to take fare of you or your family . God bless 🙏😍🙏🌺❤️🌷
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Reply to Heartaches7849
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We need to look at the other side too. IF you live in the house with your mom for free... and there is an opportunity for rental. Maybe you need to leave and someone rents so the money can go to care? - Sometimes you think there is money for care but if your mom lives in the house - there may not be enough money for everything - covering the cost of a house is very expensive and so is care - you can't do both. you need to find a way to show your sister that there is enough money for everything or you have to pay for rent ? -also, with covid, cost of care is super expensive because so few caregivers. Don't threaten your sibling as they may not have the money for the care you need. I feel like we don't have the whole story.. but i agree it is very difficult to resolve... hopefully you all work it out.
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Lymie61 Jul 28, 2020
I though I read that he lives across the street not in the same house but maybe I’m mixing up my info.
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I'm so sorry you are in this spot. Mine is sort of the opposite. Sister (and her visually impaired, usually alcohol impaired husband as well) live with mom in a house owned by mom. I live down the street and am the POA. Sister wanted desperately to be the one who cared for our 89 year old mom, but she is not in a position to quit working. I want mom to be well cared for, and she has the resources to pay. I'm the POA and in charge of the business affairs and think that we should have a care-giver there during the day while sister and I are both working, but sister doesn't want that (she needs for the resources to be preserved a lot more than I do). We tried several caregivers and it is hard to get it set up in a way that is satisfactory to our very choosy mom. And of course it is her right to be choosy! But what it means is that my family and I are on the hook for lots of care and being at mom's beck and call for everything related to the care of the home (my husband and son do all the yard work, are working with the plumber on serious issues, etc.). Sister has mom's debit card and uses it freely, certainly for mom's care but I also fear that it is sometimes for her husband's bad habits. So I just wanted to share that no matter how you set it up, there are challenges. I don't know that this is all that helpful, but I send you my good karma and wishes for an improved situation. I'm reading "Boundaries" and seeing a counselor and maybe if you can find time those things would help you too. Best wishes.
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cye123 Jul 28, 2020
don't allow debit card. If you have POA you need to control all money - because it should be going for care - this is such a hard situation - and nothing you will do will be good or right and you will always be the bad guy. But just know you are POA and it is your job to ensure there is enough money to care for your mom and give her the best care possible. Treat it like a business.
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Can I suggest that you go to www.nelf.org to find a certified elder law attorney. Naela has no criteria or special training for lawyers to sign up as elder care attorneys and quite frankly I have found that it is not the cheapest way to go. The client in many cases is paying for the education of the attorney.

A certified elder law attorney has special training and certification and tend to be cheaper because it is their specialty, you are not paying them to learn the law.

I know that you said you don't have the money, but mom should be paying for this, it is her affairs that are being put in order.

You really need to tell your mom that something has to change or you will not be able to help her any longer. It is unacceptable that she doesn't want to rock the boat with your sister and lay it all on you. When did your sister change the house to her name? Could it be that your sister has told your mom that she would throw her out if she changes anything? This all smacks of elder abuse by your sister and your mom needs to know that she is not in danger if she changes anything.
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Reply to Isthisrealyreal
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cye123 Jul 28, 2020
nothing can be changed if your mom was not well.
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So reading through some of your answers here I’m not seeing any indication that your mom is incompetent or cognitively impaired. She needs care help and probably assistance with her financial affairs but is capable of understanding and making decisions, it this rite? Perhaps rather than trying to get her to take the POA away from your sister a better approach would be to tell her that giving you POA and MPOA ( springing or DPOA depending on your state too if possible) as well given that you are really the hands on sibling would make life a lot easier for you. This way you not only can make decisions on the spot, as first on scene but carry out any wishes for her without having to take the time to go through sis. For instance if mom wanted cash out of the bank to give to grandkids at Christmas. At the same time simply tell mom, this is all providing she is all there cognitively, that you need help. You will always be there for her but you are uncomfortable with some of the things she needs help with and you feel like she is too. It would be so much relief for you if she had a female come in to help with some of these things and since Sis either lives too far away or is unable to for whatever reason (be supportive rather than accusatory here no matter how you really feel) a hired professional seems like the way to go. With the legal ability you can investigate the best way to accomplish this rather than hand Sis the chore and see if there is a way to get insurance to pay at least part etc. Then ask her doctor for a referral and let them access what she needs and what will or won’t be covered. You and Mom can then go from there. I would even be upfront with Mom that your livelihood is suffering, it’s not her fault and your not complaining but you need to find a solution before it becomes damaging to your future. If mom has not been deemed incompetent and your sisters POA is not a DPOA that has officially kicked in then your sister is not needed for mom to do any of this. Many people use POA not just elderly, it simply gives someone else the ability to carry out your financial business as directed not a directive to take over and make decisions for you, unless of course that’s what you want.

I would do your best to avoid conflict with your sister or complaining about her to mom even though it sounds like you have every reason to do both here. It will only serve to make things messier and probably upset your mom, all unnecessarily at this point. I think I read that there is already some tension between your mom and sister but mom still doesn’t want to rock that boat so there may be all kinds of emotions at work there having nothing to do with you that you aren’t going to resolve. If possible my advice would be to go around sister under the guise of helping her even, while you still can. Confront the house issue, a glaring one, later if need be but as someone else mentioned that could come back to bite her (your sister) without you having to lift a finger! You take care of yourself and Mom.
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Reply to Lymie61
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Quit. Give two weeks notice, tell her that you'd rather work as a professional caretaker; the hours are better.
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Reply to SFdaughter
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I think this is the page you need:

https://www.montcopa.org/148/Senior-Services

It's the website for Montgomery County's Area Agency on Aging, which is a good portal for advice and information on all kinds of issues. You should be able to find a contact number for someone who can really help get you started.

Your mother is entitled to support. It is not appropriate for her adult son to be assisting her with personal care; and in any case it is not reasonable for you to be her primary caregiver when she has funds to support independent living at home.

There is no need to go in with all guns blazing and level accusations of exploitation verging on financial abuse at your sister - these would be difficult to pursue, and stressful for your mother, and besides what you want is help for your mother, rather than punishment of your sister.

But with POA your sister has accepted certain responsibilities towards your mother and, very clearly, she is not fulfilling them. The people at AAA will be able to reassure your mother and explain to her what her proper expectations should be. They will also be able to direct you and her to the right kind of services, and if your mother chooses to access these your sister will have no authority to refuse to pay for them.

Anyway - give them a call and ask for advice. You might find it helpful to jot down a few notes first, such as your mother's age, any known health difficulties, and what sort of things she needs help with.

Regarding the POA: you say there is "very bad blood" between your sister and your mother. What do you mean? It makes it harder to understand how your mother came to give your sister Power of Attorney for her; when did your mother create this document, and what were the circumstances?
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Reply to Countrymouse
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Sorry for you, I took care of my mom until she passed at 98 I was POA. So maybe sis should step up. Tell mom you are killing your self and need helper or you won't be able to care for her either. I cant tell you how hard it is to care for a loved one.Talk to your mom and tell her.I had to tell my mom and she heard me.prayers for you
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Reply to William1211
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If she agrees, you will not need an attorney unless there are obvious competency issues.
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Reply to Chellyfla
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Your sister is POA when you do all the work. Yeah that makes a lot of sense. Well, you agreed to that arrangement, and you can get yourself out of it.
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Reply to cetude
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You don't mention any competency issues with mom, so POA should NOT be active. If mom gave her permission for sis to take over, and she is still considered competent, she can negate that and she can also negate the current POA and assign a new POA (although again, if she is competent, it wouldn't be activated yet, but just having you assigned would let you take over when the time comes.)

Using your zip code with https://www.naela.org/findlawyer? or lookup local EC attys, many will offer a minimal free consult. If mom can't get there, some may be willing to come to her, with you there. If money is an issue, there might be some who will help at reduced or no cost, but if they can get the POA negated, mom's assets could be used to pay for the legal necessities (or reimburse you if you pay up front.) If sis is that much of a PITA, I would be willing to cough up the money needed to get this done!

You say your mother is resistant to change, but perhaps if you could get her to one of these attys (or they to her), they could reassure her that this is for her benefit. They might be able to convince her to change the POA (notice has to be sent to current POA and any entity who has a copy, like the bank.)

The only other option is to go for guardianship (EC atty can help with that as well, and often can get it expedited.) This would automatically override the POA. Now, if she is still considered competent, the court may not grant it, or if they did, it might be for minimal oversight, which can be revised later, if needed. EC atty should assess mom's competency before embarking on this as it is expensive.
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Reply to disgustedtoo
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I would leave and contact social services saying there is no one who can longer care for your mom and she needs assistance. Write a two weeks notice to your sister. If your mom has medicaid then it will pay for it
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Reply to Arp1754
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my2cents Jul 28, 2020
If mom has Medicaid, that puts mom in poverty bracket. That would mean POA has no funds to use for mom's care (as poster is requesting).
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Dear SOs208. You are in a tough spot. Your older? sister has the POA. You state you are the youngest son, what about your sibs? You need to make clear to entire family, close by, near or far that you cannot do this and they all together need to make plans for mom’s care. Make clear in your letter exactly what you are capable of doing. I might point out that you are 62 and not totally a spring chicken! Make no suggestions, let them do the figuring out, give them a suitable time, week or two, and then “leave” on your business trip. If youaren’t There, Sis will have to either get help in or do it herself. I know this sounds ruthless but she and sibs are using you. Be strong, good luck.
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Reply to BarbChicago
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Your mom is afraid of change but doesn't care if you are overwhelmed with her care? Time for mom to deal and change the POA if she is able. You take her to a lawyer and tell them you want to revoke the old POA and set up a new one.
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kbuser Jul 28, 2020
That is exactly what I did when I became mom's full-time caregiver, but my brother had POA for medical and financial. Mom still insisted on having my brother medical POA, even though he never visited or would dream of taking her to a doctor appt, but did switch me to financial POA. It made life infinitely easier. I was able to switch her Medicare to something that had more coverage and was cheaper, I could deal with her house and car insurance, had access to her annuity to manage that. If you make that huge commitment to caregive, the recipient needs to respect that and give you the tools to do it.
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I am not an attorney but if I were you I would seek an attorney for yourself. If you are the sole care provider for your mother and your sibling is POA and handling all the financials for your parent but refuses to give you relief - TIME TO LAWYER UP! Nothing personal only business...
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Reply to Thisis4mlm
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Thank you all so much. I live across the street from mom. Sister knows that and has the attitude that I am there. There is very bad blood between her and my mother. Ill try and answer all your questions here.
1. I am EXTREMELY motivated to change this situation.
2. Mom does have enough money to pay for care.
3.Sister is refusing to pay for help. I am self employed and finding it super difficult to keep my business afloat due to her constant need.
4. I am there 25/7 doingALL the care she needs. Bathing, changing urine bag, meals, changing her, cleaning up after her companion doc Scotty. Thank God for him!
5.my sister convinced mom to put her house in her name to avoid a nursing home attaching it if she needs a facility6. There is absolutely no communicating with my sister.
7. sister will not spend moms money because it will cut into her inheritance.
8. I can not afford an attorney to help.
I have begged mom to change the POA to me.. she is 95 and extremely afraid of change. My heart hurts for her because she is totally dependent on me or someone for her care. I am moms youngest son and I see tears fill her eyes when I’m the one that has to wash her and take her to the bathroom.. this is an awful but way to common issue I suppose. I am trying to convince mom to change her POA , But I don’t want it to be under pressure. It’s just gotten so out of hand and I feel like my hands are so tied. I am burned out beyond measure and mom sits and cries. I am 62 and feel I should know how to take the bull by the horns and fix this.I’m trying very hard to leave the bull alone and not choke out my sister..lolol
if I get mom to change this.. do I need an attorney or just a notary ?
Thanks so much for all your help. It’s great to just talk things out with people who may have been in the same situation.
Best to you all! Rob
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BarbBrooklyn Jul 26, 2020
JUST STOP helping.

Putting mom's house in Sis's name was a big mistake. Your sister must be kind of dim not to know this.

In your shoes, I would simply refuse to help any longer. Your sister has POA; this is HER responsibility to get mom's care sorted, not yours.
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How did this very one-sided arrangement come about? How long has this been going on?

Is your question how you can make your POA sister to get you some relief?

Our question to you is how determined are you to make things better for yourself if you can't control what POA sister does? As others have stated below, you don't have to stay trapped in this situation.
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Reply to CTTN55
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Petition Probate Court to become her Guardian.
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Pasa18 Jul 26, 2020
Ultimately if all other means are exhausted or mom is not competent.
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Is sister refusing to pay for help? Does mom have enough money to pay for help? Does sister help in any way? Are you there 24/7 doing all the work? The answers to those questions could give some insight.

Just tell sister you need some help and be specific what you need help with. A couple days off each week? Do you need x number of hours a week? A vacation. Tell her specifically what you need help with and give her the options: You wear out and cannot do it at all. You have obligations at your own home and need to split the tasks with her or she needs to hire someone for x hrs a day and x number of days a week. Make a list of what you do and what you need help with and how often.

Then you will have to deal with - she will either provide or her plan is to put her in some kind of facility. Are you willing to go along with a facility plan if that is what she has on her mind? The house can sit or be sold for her care. Even if it sits for now, if mom ends up in a Medicaid bed, there's a chance a sale later on (or what is left in her estate) could be used to reimburse the state for what they provide while she is in Medicaid bed.
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Reply to my2cents
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If Mom is competent, she can revoke ur sister's POA and assign you. No one should be a Caregiver without being the POA for the reasons you have listed. Your sister is probably trying to save her inheritance. If you don't live with Mom it will be easier to stand your ground. Even if you live with her, you need to tell sister you need help or start looking for LTC or AL for Mom.
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Reply to JoAnn29
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Do you live with Mom? Call up sister & explain you cannot do everything 24/7. You need help & since sister controls her $$$ she has to hire caregiver. I think it’s time for SNF, or if she’s still mobile, ALF. Don’t spend all your time arguing with sister if she refuses. You can get nursing assessment to bring to facility admissions office. Then tell them sis is poa. Perhaps they can work with you with the Social Worker & Medicaid office. Sister has to spend mother’s $$$ on her care ...& since you are the only one doing care, you seem to be responsible one! She can’t just ignore mom!!! Also see Elder law Atty. Last resort is send mom to ER & have them place her. Tell them you have bad back or have health problems yourself & cannot care for her. All the administrative stuff can be worked out later. Hugs 🤗
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disgustedtoo Jul 27, 2020
ER dump is the wrong answer. Depending on mom's capabilities, they could legitimately send her home in a taxi! Others have commented about this.

OP probably doesn't have authority to ask mom's doc about anything medical, but she CAN report to them and ask for their assistance. Perhaps they can provide someone who can help (APS? SW?)
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