Mom refuses to get a DPOA. What can I do?

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For the last 3 1/2 years, I have tried to talk to my Mom (71) about her need for a DPOA. She will not hear of it, soon as I mention anything about it she cuts me off says I don't need that, ect. Mom thinks that all she needs is me on her bank account and all is good. I want some kind of protection for me, I do not trust one of my half-sisters to not try to do something after my Mom is gone or even before.


The only thing I can think of to get Mom to agree to a DPOA is to make her start paying her own bills again, which is something she does not want nor thinks she needs to do anymore. (I hear a lot of "I've done that for 60 years, I don't have to anymore.")


Don't get me wrong, I'm not going to dump it in her lap and walk away. I will do her budget and help her pay her bills online, I'm even thinking of having her initial each bill on the budget that she paid it. But, the days of me doing all the bills while she stays in her room not caring about it are over.

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jeannegibbs - Yours sounds exactly like this situation. Mom only has her Social Security, she is on Medicaid. At this moment I do what she tells me to when it comes to paying her bills and I act on her best interest. She doesn't want one of my half-sisters to know anything about her finances because her husband is the one that is always pushing about telling him and as Mom says it frankly is none of his business. My other half-sister doesn't care about it one way or the other and neither does her husband.

Oh, I am already preparing myself because there is no doubt in my mind that when Mom does pass on that he'll influence my half-sister into taking me to court because I'm always hearing about how I'm taking her "fair share" it's too bad they won't ask about their "fair share" of expenses.
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My mother could not be talked into either financial or medical POA. It was not catastrophic. She had no assets and little income and was on Medicaid. My sisters and I had no trouble acting in her best interest. I'm not saying this is ideal, and I wish she would have named one of us, but we got by just fine.

You at least have the medical POA. If Mom doesn't have a complex financial situation you should be OK. The POA ends at mother's death, in any case, so it would be of no help if a half-sister tries to play fast and loose after Mom dies.

Especially when there are potential family conflicts it is important to have POAs in place. But it is not the end of the world if you can't make that happen ... especially if there are no complex finances.
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Good Morning,
Thanks all for your responses

BarbBrooklyn - She has an advanced medical directive that took me 7 years to talk her in to getting, (since Dad passed in 09). It took my BIL saying that he would move her into their house and take care of her to get her to get one.
Yeah, when I first started caring for her she told us that we didn't know what we were talking about because she was older than us and she would always know more. In other words 'your my kid, you have no idea what you're talking about.'

geewiz - I question the ALZ/dementia diagnosis, more so the dementia. She has no problems with focus. Her lawyer told her she didn't need a will because all she had was the house and she had me added to it because it was what Dad wanted and I'm an adult disabled child. Though for years I've told both parents that they just needed to have a will where everything is sold and the money split between the three of us, if there is any left.

freqflyer - I use those "therapeutic fibs" on many things to get her to do what she needs to for her health. I have been trying on the legal things also, but, so far they are not working. But, I'll keep trying. Right now she thinks that as long as she has given me verbal permission that is all that I need.
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PurpleDolphin88, some times we need to use "theraputic fibs" to get our elders to do something that really needs to be done.

You can tell Mom that you can no longer do this or that because of new laws, that you she would need a Power of Attorney so you could do those things for her.

I used a fib to get my parents [90's] to get a more current Will as theirs was older than dirt. I told my Dad the way their old Wills were written that the State would get half of their estate. Next thing I knew, Dad wanted me to set up appt with an Attorney... while there they got their POA's and other legal documents updated :)
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You need a family law or elder law attorney ASAP. If she's too far gone and the attorney questions her competency, time to go for guardianship. It is a bad idea to take responsibility for someone without having authority.
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Purple, your bio says your Mom has dementia. Unless it is very early stages, she may not be competent to sign any legal documents. If it is earlier stages, then run, don't walk to an attorney.
So here are some ways to protect you and your Mom even without any legal documents. 1) Lock up all financial paperwork so if the sisters visit, they don't have access to account numbers, checks, tax returns etc. If they may already have this info, then open new accounts and lock up that paperwork. 2) Keep meticulous records. Attach/save bills to the outgoing statements. 3) Any checks to cash or to you should have documentation attached. e.g. when I wrote a check to myself from my Mom's account, I attached all of the receipts of items it was for --- depends, shampoo, pj's, etc.
As to after Mom passes, well --- is there a will? If not research the rules of intestacy for your state (this indicates how assets will be distributed when someone dies without a Will. )  Knowledge is a powerful thing.
One last thought. If Mom has dementia, she isn't able to focus, pay bills or make decisions.
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Do you have Medical POA for her?

I think I would take her to a lawyer and have it explained to her by a professional. After all, YOu'Re just a "kid", lol.
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