I am working on the guardianship process for my elderly father. Any words of encouragement are welcome.

Follow
Share

I am working on the guardianship process for my elderly father. It is taking some time, longer than I thought. We are writing in a provision that would allow him to stay in his house if he meets certain criteria (i.e. bringing in care). Our care manager has quit and now I'm trying to make all the arrangements for him. Need to hire a new care manager. This is a bit overwhelming. Any words of encouragement are welcome.

Find Care & Housing
16

Answers

Show:
I think your dad is higher functioning than my dad. My dad had no idea what was going on even though he’d be visited by a lawyer, given mental tests by a doctor and served legal papers. He had no short term memory. It was quite clear to anyone that my dad could not begin to handle his affairs.

You path down this road is going to be tougher than what I went through I think.
Helpful Answer (2)
Reply to Windyridge
Report

Geez, Windy, u sure we dont have the same dad? 😊 At least today when he brought up the guardianship in front of our new care manager, I didnt get a flat 'no'. Maybe I'm making progress.
Helpful Answer (2)
Reply to Babs75
Report

For me the key reasons for guardian conservator was to be able to keep Dad in care, end the driving, sell the car and house. I wouldn’t have bothered with the process if those issues weren’t dealt with.
Helpful Answer (2)
Reply to Windyridge
Report

Well, we are in the home stretch of this. Dad is totally against any kind of guardianship/conservatorship even though we tried to write a stipulation that says I can't move him nor can I sell his cars. He says he is not going to court nor will he accept the guardianship and will not do anything that I say. I have told him that I could have an outside guardian assigned (I'm really about at that point - I'm so burned out) but he will not honor that either. He only wants to work this out with me out of court which is not the point of this. He wants to keep on this road of destruction he has started and he wants to keep driving (no license for over 6 months and he's 92 years old!) The attorney and I are proceeding with the court thing and I put a bunch of notes together for him over the weekend for the hearing.
Helpful Answer (2)
Reply to Babs75
Report

Babs75, too bad your state or country makes it difficult to split guardianship and conservatorship duties among two people, as that can be a good alternative, especially in cases where both jobs will require a lot of attention. Another alternative that can work is to have co-guardians/conservators. My wife and I and two daughters are co-guardians and conservators for our youngest daughter and that works well for us. And my wife and her sister were co-guardians and conservators for their aunt, which also worked pretty well. Some courts discourage, but ultimately do allow, co-guardians and conservators and maybe that could be an option for you. Regardless, since money is not a problem, your contingency plan to seek a professional guardian if it gets to be too much for you is good and shows that you've given this some serious thought. Best wishes.
Helpful Answer (0)
Reply to bicycler
Report

If you are appointed guardian you can select whomever you wish as your agent. Finding someone to cart dad off to the doc may be the easy part!

When we applied for emergency guardianship, hearing 1, there was no opppostion and adult protective svs was helping until I found a local atty. Then, after we left town, one of the financial abusers showed the judge a POA that no one knew about. This came up in hearing #2, as this former co-worker probably also had a will made for mthr at the same time as the poa- all made by her son's live in girlfriend (ethics red flag). Judge ordered full mental assessment, which found mthr marginal at best, but mtherr told shrink that she felt like the coworker was trying to pull something over on her. Yay! The judge was "friends" with that woman and wanted to protect her, and thus when we returned for hearing 3, he proposed dismissal and sealing the record, including the psych report. Mthr's court appointed atty supposed the judge's suggestion for her to write a dpoa that day so she would be protected. Likely the next day, she would have been found incompetent, but 3 attorneys concurred. So we have POA which gives us more flexibility in managing her finances. Ugh, so hard.
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to surprise
Report

Thank you! 2 of my 3 siblings live out of town. The third one is here but he's pretty much worthless. Doesn't even answer calls or texts about dad. Since we do have plenty of funds available, I am shopping for a new care manager to manage the Monday-Friday stuff and was told today that the caregiver company I'm using also has care managers for hire so I will be meeting with one next week. Us kids talked about a professional guardian but I understand they can cost a lot. There is quite a bit of money involved here and none of us want to turn the conservatorship over to someone else. It is my understanding that the courts here would probably not let us split the two functions. As a last resort, if this gets to be too much, I'll be back at my attorney to seek professional guardianship but right now, we're not going that route.
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to Babs75
Report

Babs75, kudos to you for being willing to take responsibility for what needs to be done for your stubborn, at least somewhat lucid dad who nonetheless apparently needs much assistance. Do try to remember as you work through this process that his stubborness to you is his independence to himself and don't unnecessarily erode his independence over stuff that isn't imminently dangerous to himself or others. I think your situation is in some ways harder than mine was when I became my dad's guardian because, even though I was his full-time caregiver, his dementia was to the point that he had no idea what was happening. I had never heard of putting a condition into a guardianship, such as allowing him to stay in his house until xyz happens, but it's a great idea if it results in him and his attorney ad litem reducing or withdrawing opposition to your guardianship petition.

That said, your being a bit overwhelmed, panicked and concerned about whether you're going to be able to manage the demands of guardianship while working full-time is a legitimate problem. The responsibilities of being a guardian are serious and can be daunting, even more so for a ward who is stubborn and somewhat lucid. You mentioned responsibilities to your own family and the importance of your employment, thus your being always able and willing to make time, and to stay strong enough to follow through, for an already difficult guardianship will be even harder. You've provided quite a bit of detail about your and your dad's situation, but I'm still wondering about your three siblings who are less, or not at all, involved -- often such siblings become much more involved when they think their future inheritances are disappearing.

You asked for words of encouragement, but all I can offer is best wishes for what I think is going to be a hard job for you to do. You might want to consider having a professional guardian appointed, instead of yourself. Again, kudos to you for even considering taking on this difficult job. Best wishes.
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to bicycler
Report

So you and Dad are going before a judge at the same hearing? That’s gotta be rough. My dad was represented by a guardian ad litem, an attorney appointed by the court, who had visited Dad in the assisted living. My case was easy. There was no question of my dads incompetence, no objections from any party.

I wish you the best of luck with this. As far as additional work, there are reports due, financial accountings and so forth, but it’s doable.  
Helpful Answer (2)
Reply to Windyridge
Report

Am I going to be able to manage the demands of guardianship while working full time? I absolutely cannot let this interfere with my job. Still trying to find a new case manager to run Monday-Friday.

As far as the paperwork, that's really been the least of my concerns. I'm a data analyst for a living - the queen ofvExcel spreadsheets!

My biggest concern is that It sounds like I'm going to have to be a bit of a bad a**. I'm not sure I'm strong enough to go up against my strong willed, stubborn father. What if he won't do what he's supposed to?
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to Babs75
Report

Related
Questions