How can keep siblings from parents' estate? - AgingCare.com

How can keep siblings from parents' estate?

Follow
Share

My siblings have made social service assistance their careers and have a plethora of other issues. My parents are ill, but not terminal (yet). My parents are concerned that my siblings will try to have them deemed as unfit to care for themselves and will get their hands in their financials, take their money, and leave them out to dry. My siblings live in the same town, I live thousands of miles away; if something happens to my parents I won't be able to get to where they live before my siblings get to the house and sell everything or deplete the accounts, or protect my parents and their property. My parents want me to handle everything and do not want my siblings to have any say so in their affairs. What can I do and what can my parents do to try and prevent my siblings from destroying my parents' lives?

My parents moving to where I am is not an option. Neither are unfit in any way. I talk to my parents weekly, at the very least, and they are of sound minds.

My siblings have always been troublesome for my parents and though they live by my parents, the only time they talk to them is when they want something, usually money. My siblings have stolen from my parents (and me) in the past, and have been too busy to take them to appointments (for example, if my parent couldn't drive for some reason) until my parents offered to fill up their car with gas (in one of the states that gasoline is the highest in the nation), buy them a meal, and give them money for their time and trouble (usually $100 is the 'going rate' for helping our parents).

Obviously, I have no respect for my siblings; but that aside, I want to make sure my parents, their home and finances aren't trampled on, stolen, besieged and left for dragon fodder until I get there.

What can I and my parents do to prevent this? Any information and input is greatly appreciated.

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
10

Answers

Show:
Thank you all so much for your support and help. I haven't had a chance to check this in awhile and it was very comforting to come back and read such great, helpful, and kind words.

I sincerely appreciate you all. I will be finding an elder attorney to help, and my parents have already begun the process on their end.

It's a sensitive topic, and for years I've been timid to speak with my parents about it. I haven't spoken to my siblings in years, but my parents have kept me informed of their antics. It breaks my heart that I can't be there by their side, and I am always worried about them. Since one sibling has recently approached them about their health situations and their finances, my parents are even more anxious to get their futures settled and your information will be helpful.

Thank you again, I'm a little more confident that my siblings will not ruin my parents' future for which they have worked many long and hard years.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

Do exactly what VW and Igloo have stated, read and re read and then move on it fast. In all honesty I have to say that I don't really see how it is possible to live so far away from your parents and do this. I live in the house with my mother and it is a good thing I do because there are issues that arise that need your immediate attention and how you can do that thousands of miles away is nothing short of a miracle in my book.

Do listen to Igloo and VW their advice is exactly what I would have said!
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Go to an Elder Care Attorney TODAY and get their advice and follow it! WV and Igloo gave wonderful advice and both hit on the highlights of the situation you are soon to find yourself in. I'm so sorry you're going through this. May GOD Bless you for what you're undertaking, you're an Angel.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

My sister did the same thing. Unfortunetly I didn't find out until after my dad died and learned she had a secret POA and had, had her daughter's name put on his checking account. I was his executrix. There are evil and greedy people out thee!
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

vw - great advise for doing all this via trusts.

BUT trusts can be problematic IF mom & dad need to apply for Medicaid in the future. Each state administers Medicaid under their own rules but within federal guidelines. Some states are more flexible on trusts while others view it as Medicaid asset avoidance. Please make sure your attorney is experienced in elder law as it applies for your state. Most estate attorneys are about taxes and probate & generational pass through which is fine but alot of these are viewed by Medicaid as deliberately done to avoid having countable resources for Medicaid.I'd suggest getting a NAELA attorney. This site has a drops-down list of elder law attorneys by state, I'd start there.

What I have found in this journey with my mom & MIL, is that unless they are generationally wealthy, if they live long enough they will run out of money and the caregivers (whether family or hired) will run out of steam or ability to take care of their needs @ home, and they will need to enter a NH. They will need to eventually apply for Medicaid to pay for the NH. So you need to pro-actively plan that whatever you do with their $ and assets that it will work in the future for Medicaid.

For Medicaid, there are the initial resources that exist when they apply for Medicaid and then there are also those resources that exist after their death and subject to MERP (Medicaid estate recovery). Like an enhanced benefit trust (aka Lady Bird deed) is MERP exempt for TX, MI and a couple of other states but most states do not allow that type of trust to be exempt on property. This is the sort of thing a good elder law attorney will know and take into account in doing a plan for your parents. Also they will be your point person since you are not living in the state. The para-legals at the firm will be important to you too. Good luck.
Helpful Answer (4)
Report

i can only speak to my experience...My dad gave me durable POA and medical POA, He and I agreed that I handle all the finances of the house and allows me to spend the funds as I see fit. He has his insurance for his burial and his plot next to Mom's is paid for. The only thing I would have to pay for is a casket or cremation fees. He has enough trust i will physically take care of him(though I am a HORRIBLE cook). He knows that my brothers either could not or would not do the job...and there was a sis-n-law who would've tried to gain whatever money she could through the sale of the house....so we cooked all thier gooses and sold it all, he bought me,him and my little girl a mobile home I will be paying for long after hes gone :) I suggest strongly getting a POA with your folks and telling your siblings to suck it.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

IF and when your parents move to a long-term care facility, and IF that care will be funded by Medicare and Medicaid, the proceeds from the sale of all major personal property must be paid to the state. (Each state varies.) This also applies to life insurance policies! Also, unless all assets are placed in an Irrevocable Trust, the state can and will take these assets too. Medicaid also looks back 5 years to see if the assets were "given away," and if they were, there are financial penalties to be paid by the financial POA, who's responsibility it is to protect those assets. Good luck with handling your siblings. Our family went through similar circumstances, and it is difficult when siblings are at odds. It just makes everything so much more painful. Take care. Sounds like you are doing a great job.
Helpful Answer (3)
Report

VW did give great answers, and blannie is right get going on it yesterday. The attorney will advise you about the trusts, living wills, durable powers and regular power of attorney and which combination of all works the best in your situation. You will probably have to make a few visits to do some paperwork. You can handle a lot of their financials online from afar for them. You have to cover their ass ettes.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

VW gave you great answers. Just get this all put in effect while your parents are both of sound mind so that can't be challenged. Get going on it! If I were your parents, I'd call cabs to get me to dr's appts or check out other kinds of support in the county for transportation for the elderly. I just can't imagine such rotten siblings - sheesh!
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

I'm sorry you're having to worry about this but know that you're not alone. We had the same problem with my in-laws - so we went to see an elder attorney who suggested that my mother-in-law set up a Living Will and Trust and make my husband her Executor of the Living Will/Trust as well as making him her Financial Power of Attorney and me her Medical Power of Attorney quickly after my father-in-law passed because we all were worried about the same things you are. The Living Will/Trust and POAs were lifesavers for us. Our no good siblings could not touch the house or the finances or meddle in her health problems. They liked to cause any kind of problem they could any chance they could. It didn't stop them from lifting what they could from the house when they finally came to visit, but it helped tremendously in handling the big financial matters. Plus, we changed bank accounts to the trust which had us also on the account as Executors and handled all her bills, etc. She had a VISA check-card that she could use for all purchases and we ensured she had so much cash on hand (kept the big portion of it in a small safe that we bought at Wal-Mart so they couldn't lift that also when she wasn't looking - along with the checkbook). She wasn't savvy enough to go to the bank or an ATM to withdraw the cash herself, so we did it for her. She has passed now, and the Living Will/Trust kept her estate from going through Probate. So the attorney and the Executor divided things up how it was set forth in the Living Will/Trust. And if any of the heirs wanted to contest it, they could, but if they lose (which the attorney assured us they would as long as records were kept accordingly), the attorney fees would be subtracted from their portion of the estate. It worked out well and everything was distributed without a hitch. We didn't even have to see them to give them their portion. We made the check out for their amount, and the attorney had paperwork that they had to sign in order to get the check basically stating in legal terms that they agree with the distribution. As sad as it is, after she passed - they haven't contacted us, and, of course, we aren't contacting them. She and my father-in-law also had a pre-paid funeral which I also strongly recommend. It's cheaper than waiting til they pass to pay for that stuff, and helped us in ensuring we were doing what they wanted during another stressful time. I hope this helps. Good luck!!
Helpful Answer (11)
Report

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
Related
Questions