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I'm financial and healthcare POA for my 87 year old mom. I recently executed the POA through her Neurologist (she is in stages of cognitive impairment). My niece, her husband and 2 children have lived with her for the last 5 years. They told my mom that, while pregnant with 1st child, she couldn't sleep because the upstairs neighbors were making too much noise. They told us they would be gone after the birth (plus 90 days of bonding of course). Mom agreed to that. At 90 days, they had no plan. I only pressed them one other time. Still no plan. In hindsight, I should've setup a written rental agreement. But Mom started showing signs of memory loss. I guess them being there was advantageous for both of them. But living a lifestyle they couldn't afford on their own became intoxicating. My niece grew up in that house. The word "entitlement" now comes into play. My sister is and always has been a frequent visitor because those two are her daughter and son-in-law. Fast forward to present. I've endured condescending talk and disrespect. Mom now has difficulty with simple tasks such as dialing the phone. She was always hiding her debit card from them, but couldn't remember where she hid it. They decided to hold on to it... and they knew the pin. I pay all of mom's bills online so I check every month all the activity. They are hiring caregivers without my knowledge. The signatures on those checks don't look like moms' (forgery). My sister is also using the card to put gas in her car and go to spas (not often but still...). They're loving this sweet setup. But their arrogance lead them to send me a letter with what they said were "non-negotiable" requests. Mind you, they're living rent free in exchange for care for mom. They want mom to pay for a caregiver 60 hours a week. They also want to be paid California wages, including overtime, holidays, etc.(?) They also wanted me to make moms' finances transparent to them. I responded with a different plan as we can't do that financially. And moms' finances are none of their business. But there was a way to give her all the care she deserves. I would have to liquidate the property and move her to a nice assisted living community. This is where the sh#$t hit the fan. The ones who stand to lose the most are always the loudest in the room. I started the process of the sale. They went silent. I had an investor ready to go to escrow. I've been keeping everyone informed as I move forward. But got silence. I informed them I was coming up to meet with the broker and termite inspector. We were refused entrance. I was not allowed to talk to my mom in private. A heated exhange ensued. I felt threatened. I apologized to the inspector and we both left. They got to mom. She kept saying she didn't want to move. I knew that. We been in conversation about this since receiving that letter. But they got to her. My thinking is to put this in the hands of the legal system and let them enforce whatever decisions they make. I filed a report with Adult Protection Services about the recent incident. I'm trying to cancel the escrow. I just can't explain my thoughts and actions to someone who doesn't perceive the world as I do. I won't go up there anymore. I will begin to tighten the finances and make things more difficult to access. I may look into this forgery avenue. But I'm here looking for advice.

iamhabit, I completely understand wanting to avoid the confrontations - especially with family and especially as we grow older. I was quite a firebrand in my youth, but even though I'm fifteen years younger than you I have definitely loss my appetite for repeated arguments. In this case, you do not have to communicate with your niece if you don't want to - use a lawyer or a paralegal or a mediator.

I also understand your desire to let your Mom die in her home as she wishes but from the information in this post that doesn't look likely to me unless there are funds available for 56-84 hours a week of outside care givers (8-12 hours per day x 7 days a week) or someone else moves in and takes over your mother's care. Your niece is asking for 60+ hours of outside care giving a week and to be paid beyond room and board because your mother is requiring more care and your niece is finding it difficult to provide that care. Your niece is in a very difficult position trying to be care giver for two young children and her grandmother, as well as take care of a home and husband. Most of us find it difficult to be the full time care giver for one elderly adult. Your niece is also emotionally abusing your mother by trying to make you the "bad guy" and isolating your mother from your support, although tired and stressed out she may not have thought her actions through. Your mother hiding her ATM card may indicate your niece or her husband has put pressure on your mother to provide funds she didn't really want to in the past. Older folks suffer lots of insecurities and anxiety as they lose their abilities to care for themselves; no one should be telling them how awful AL is or how their daughter doesn't care what they want, etc.

Your mother needs 24 hour care/supervision. It could probably still be done at home at this point by a dedicated care giver with limited respite, but your niece has too many responsibilities to adequate care for her grandmother too. Are you able and willing to move in with Mom after your niece's family moves out? If not (and maybe even if you are) AL is probably the best long term solution (in terms of basic care and socialization) and your mother may adjust better and be happier in AL at this point than a later move when her condition has deteriorated further. My Mom (who lives with me) is close to your Mom's condition - she cannot dial numbers consistently anymore but she can still use speed dials and perform all ADLs. I have a security system with cameras and family/neighbors available nearby to check on or help her on the days I work in the office. At one point, I was taking care of my mother and two of my elementary school age grand-nephews - that was very challenging so I can easily imagine what your niece is experiencing with younger children.

Because there has been conflict in the family, AL may also become a good neutral ground for everyone to visit your mother. Even if you moved into your mother's home to care for her, it would be difficult for you to "host" your niece if she remains angry with you. Your niece may also behave better and not upset your mother if she is visiting in an AL where any post-visit upset would be documented by a third party.

Hang in there! You can get past the big blowups but you cannot make everyone happy. Do what you believe is best for Mom while still taking care of yourself too.
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Reply to TNtechie
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TNtechie, that was the nail on the head. I did explain to my niece long ago that I appreciated her help. But I also made it clear that it was only prolonging the inevitable. Now that they have taken a more arrogant and aggressive stance, my gut says it may be time to give mom a more professional and controlled environment. Problem with that is she wants to die in her home. I want to respect that. I know what the underlying motive is here. I'm also a senior (70 years old) and this behavior tends to unsettle me. I'm taking all the steps to first get the finances under control. Communication is not wise for me as I am highly sensitive and don't do well in that arena. I will inform them that I plan to follow the POA to the letter. And I will use the law to protect my rights. I'm also going to seek therapy so I can talk out the whole story.
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Reply to iamhabit
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Unfortunately when you allow a disrespectful action to go unchallenged and be repeated you set the stage for disrespectful actions to escalate. When respite caregivers were needed, you should have been involved in their hire. By allowing your niece to hire caregivers without your knowledge and consent and then use forged checks to pay them you encouraged the escalating disrespectful behavior. It will continue to escalate and you will have bigger spats unless are willing to exert your authority. Your niece has a conflict of interest - she probably cannot make decisions in your mother's best interest anymore because she and her husband want her family to continue living in the home so badly. Your mother made you the POA because she trusted you to take care of her when/if she lost the ability to take care of herself. You need to take control in a nice business like manner. Be as considerate of your niece's needs as you can be, but please don't compromise Mom's care. Accept that there may be some hard feelings, at least in the short term, because your niece cannot live in that home forever. It's not an easy road to walk, but trying to put off the trip doesn't make the journey any easier - often it makes it harder as people become even more set in their positions. Good Luck!
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Some of these responses were hard to digest but I am grateful for all this input. Understand this: I was ok with their overstaying their welcome. They did prolong the inevitable move. This got out of hand when they sent me a letter stating they no longer wanted the arrangement of free rent and utilities in exchange for care. Now they want to get paid plus have a caregiver 60hrs a week. I've always agreed they need time off. So when I see checks to these agencies, I've never made a fuss about it. My whole thing is about respect for my position. At least text or call and make sure that this is ok financially. I don't want to make this a spat between us. My moms' well-being comes first....period.
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Reply to iamhabit
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Wow. I’m so impressed with how you’ve handled this! You’re my ‘hero’.

You’ve picked your battles carefully, tried to be fair, kept it in the family, you’ve done your best.

Your niece will take this hard since she grew up in the house. Who raised her, her mom or grandma?

You do have enemies now so be careful. I would have notified the authorities a LONG TIME ago. But I’m not a nice person like you are.

Do whatever is necessary! The day they forged your mom’s signature is the day those two lost their rights!

Your mom will eventually adjust to AL (it’s been great for my mom) but remember, all your relatives/enemies can waltz right in to stir the pot during visiting hours. You CAN ban certain troublemakers but as I have done, if mom keeps acting like she enjoys their visits I allowed my relatives to visit. When she makes an indication that they stress her, ban them.

Your niece (really her husband) is the one I’d worry about. He’s getting free ride and he won’t go without a fight!

Your legal status allows you to do what’s best for mom.
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Reply to HolidayEnd
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You are the POA - start acting like it. Your responsibility is to take care of your mother. Your niece has taken care of your mother for several years in a mutually beneficial relationship. You owe her reasonable consideration for that service to your mother. If your mother's care has become too much for your niece to handle in the home without additional support beyond what your mother can afford, then the arrangement must change. Sounds like you have determined that your mother needs assisted living at this point. Make sure that determination is based on what is best for your mother and not about showing your niece she isn't as entitled as she thinks she is.

As POA, you cannot be denied access to the home. You cannot be denied access to your mother. Call the local police/sheriff if needed. Make a video walking through the house, documenting the state and contents. You can leave and take your mother with you. Turn off access to your mother's funds without your knowledge and approval. Schedule and pay care givers to provide your niece reasonable respite as long as your mother remains in the home. If she cannot dial a phone, then she cannot be left alone. If 60 hours a week isn't financially viable but assisted living is, then move your mother into assisted living and evict your niece with a reasonable time frame to relocate (60-90 days). You might want to consider providing the first/last month rent plus deposit on a rental to ease this move in light of your niece's care giving.

Decide what is best for your mother, make a plan and then execute with your eye on the present and the future of her care. Do not engage in emotional discussions about past decisions/actions that cannot be changed - just because someone makes an accusation or inflammatory statement doesn't mean you must respond to it. Be grateful your niece allowed your mother to remain in her home and enjoy her great-grandchildren for those 5 years. When you feel your niece is acting entitled or otherwise inappropriate, remember all the joy she brought your mother and let it go. Your niece is scarred and feeling powerless and using emotional issues because that's all she has. Explain in a calm manner the increased care level your mother requires is driving the changes. Mother's assets must be liquidated to provide for Mother's care so it's time to make other living arrangements.
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Sorry to go against the flow here but I think you should reconsider. Are you putting your mom in a facility to spite your niece and her family? No one knows what is it like to live 24 hours with an elderly person in their home unless you have done it. Your niece is probably feeling overwhelmed but the responsibility...maybe even that she can't leave your mom unattended. Why would you be upset with your mother's money being used to pay for someone to be there when your niece can't? Surely, you can't expect your niece to never leave the house. You should respect your mom's decision and as long as she is receiving good care at home stop fretting about her finances. People always say it isn't about the money....but somehow is often is. I feel badly for your niece. I don't think she is appreciated, even if she is living rent free, the sacrifices she must make to keep your mom living at home are huge.
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Reply to dolphinlover72
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iamhabit I am a bit cofused. As your mom's poa and healthcare advocate, you as. Not in control of her finances or her care needs? It is. Quite costly and more than a 24/7 job, to care for anyone with a memory impairment. It is overwhelming, patience and very much care is needed. I cared for my mom. Especially after, she was admitted into a Facilty I work hard to ensure mom's quality of life, is as good as possible, a full time job to say the least. I think if your mom Is being cared for properly you should work with the caregivers.
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Reply to wuvsicecream
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iamhabit, tiptoe type care giver here. Tried to placate, smooth things over, let others
weigh in excessively. Small help and very very big headaches. I took over when there
had been fraud, and stepped on some toes and was so uncomfortable about it, kept
acquiescing to stuff I shouldn't have.

Take action, and have her placed into a good facility. She will have much better care
in the end. And then deal with your headache relatives. Careful they don't cause
any damage to house or try to upset your mom. Hope you have some friends or relatives to be there with you in case of confrontation.
Best of luck ((((hugs)))))
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Reply to bettina
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I needed to hear all that. GardenArtist, I've had the POA (it's durable) for some time. It was put together by Legal Zoom. There's a clause that says she must be declared incapable by her doctor. I received that letter. Moms' name is the only one on the checks. I think you and Shakingdustoff are right. I've been too soft on these people. And I'm a little long-winded. I start filing POA's Monday.
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Just a few quick clarifications, if you please.

So you're proxy/attorney-in-fact for your mother. Is the POA a durable one or springing?

Who is/are joint co-signers on your mother's account which is being used to pay for the "caregivers"? If you're financial proxy and can act, have you spoken with the bank to enact that authority and stop the unauthorized signatures? Have you contacted the alleged caregivers to vette them?

I'm not attacking you, but your post raises a lot of unanswered questions which could help in suggesting methods of handling the issues.

You wrote that you "recently executed the POA through her Neurologist". Are you writing that the neurologist drafted the POA, or that you used your authorization as proxy to get information from the neurologist?
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