I detest these financial battles after someone has passed. But it did put me in shock, being her primary caregiver for ten years. I lived with her, got her through emergencies, kept her quality of life as high as possible. She felt special until the day she died. I have MS which made some things difficult, but it always was right thing to do. My sister saw her one or twice a year, out of obligation. How should I approach this?

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Contest the will, that you were not specifically excluded and that you were her caregiver for 10 years, you will prevail.

Your sister has made her self known, do not worry what she thinks.

You deserve to have your home.

I hope you come back and I pray you contest this will.
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This is so unjust and Your Mom probably had forgotten She had made Her will before She became ill and You took on the role of Caregiver.
All You can do now is contact the Lawyer Who Your Mom made Her will with and submit Your Bill for Caring for Your Mother for ten years against Her Estate which the Benefichery (Your Sister) will have to pay You out of Your Mothers Estate.
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Thats clever, I hope it works, but sounds like It could be a costly legal battle. So sad that family is awful for some people, but other families are happy, they help each other, & have fun together. (It's a world of difference in our quality of life, the type of family we have). Children can't choose their families of course, only God can do that, but a cruel family is a guaranteed life of struggle,(which I know firsthand). So sorry for the betrayal you suffered, it hurts terribly to be rejected or counted worthless by our parent. Please work hard to believe that God loves you, & cling to that love, no matter what. ✌
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This is keepingup. This is my last posting to this living community. First it can't be overstated the kindness and good practical answers I've been lucky to receive. Second if you are a caregiver for a narcissist, please,please remember your needs matter too. God doesn't make mistakes. Third, someone said that 'no one gets out of here alive.' I made the grave mistake of assuming my home with her, maybe assets,didn't know if care how much, would help my future. I was wrong. Pay attention. Have those sometimes tortuous conversations. I love It is a community, not a cold website. Wish me the best☺
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Oi. Keepingup, this is me and I do not want you to go. Not now, not as you're feeling right now. Stay with us please.
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That’s messed up.

You say that this was a surprise for you - you and your mother never talked about what would happen to you after she passed away? How old was the will?

Even though you lived with your
mother - are you perhaps in a better financial situation than your sister?

As I said - this is messed up but could your mother have been thinking that she “did” for you by “allowing” you to live there for ten years - perhaps rent free - all
that time? Don’t get me wrong - this definitely isn’t my opinion - but I’ve read about situations such as that more than once, here on AC... The elderly parent seems to think that they are doing them a huge favor - by allowing the caregiving child to live in their house “rent free”. Regardless of the fact - that same child is their full time caregiver AND the only reason that the parent is able to remain living in their home. Messed up. Long time members here may remember JessieBell and how that was her mothers mind set. Whatever became of JessieBell, BTW?

Anyhoo - as others have mentioned, is it possible your mother was trying to put lipstick on a past riff with you sister?

Were you left anything or provided for in a prior action by your mother? Did she pay you anything for your caregiving sacrifices?

Just stabbing in the dark here. But it’s definitely messed up.

How do you handle it? I think a lot depends on your own needs now. What is your sisters take on all of this - is she willing to split the house? Can you afford to move out and live elsewhere on your own? Are you married - was there a husband living there with you? Can you afford an attorney to challenge the will? Is that even a winnable option?

Messed up. I’m sorry that this has happened to you - a bit of a slap in the face to thank you for taking care of your mother, isn’t it?

Hopefully, you can take a small measure of comfort in knowing that in spite of this nasty little surprise- that you were the better person. Better than your mother and better than your sister, in my opinion.
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keepingup Nov 2018
Thank you Rainmom. First, I always assumed the house was mine. Dumb, I guess. My sister never lived here. The "rent free" remark was made to me many times, though I paid maintence, phone, electric, wireless, bought almost all of her food, NEVER missed birthday or Christmas gifts. Just who she was. My sister is an RN two years from retirement, and has also vowed to retire as a millionaire. She is very happy with will. I don't want to be in same room with her. Don't like being angry with anyone.
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Keepingup, since you are saying it was in the will and not a trust, it's going to probate. Challenge it in probate. Another avenue is to assert squatter's rights. Yes, that's really a thing. Whatever you do, don't move out. Squatters can get ownership of a property they squat. At a minimum you should have tenant's rights. Check the laws in your state.
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keepingup Nov 2018
Thank you so much. I have lived in this home all my life and love it. I do not think she would ask me to move. Howver, jokingly?, in the past she has said she could "get a pretty penny" for it. It's not a mansion, just a three bedroom home. But because I have MS it has hard on the bath, the stairs etc. It is very disability friendly.
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Such a sad situation.

I for one am glad I read my mother's will. She has a "bill" in there for me, specifically for $1500 I am to pay the trust before it can be cashed out. YB who built on to his home to HOUSE AND CARE FOR my parents "owes" $6000.

I won't tell him about these codicils. They are not legal in any sense of the word, but are actually giant "FU" from the grave. I do NOT know why we owe her "trust" any money. OB stole well over $200K from my parents and YS took a $70K "loan" which she did not repay and was "forgiven" of in the will, and reinstated to receive her 1/5th.

I was seething with hurt and anger when I found this out. It's not legal and my brother, who is the executor told me he meant to tear this "document" up...he felt horrible that I even saw it.

Too late, the hurt will always be there. The only 2 sibs who have given mother care in her life are the ones who "owe" the estate money.

Money issues have fractured our once close family. What your mother did was awful. Sister happily taking it all is worse. I'm really sorry, I know, to an extent, how you feel.
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orlando101 Nov 2018
I'm so sorry about this. I see this in my husband's family. I put a lot of the blame on lawyers who play to the elderly parents and their ego about having, in my husband's parents case, lucked into a lot of money. They designed complicated trusts that basically shut the children out and leave everything to the grandchildren (we have no children the other sibling does). My in-laws are not in the least sophisticated with money or anything else and they just got talked into this so the lawyers could charge huge fees. Is it this generation that feels the need to "take it with them" in any way possible? I don't know, but it's really quite sad the degree to which money is put before people, especially your own children AND to not treat your children equally is terrible. Thankfully I did not grow up this way, but it even makes it more jarring to see now.
I have no advice, but can I just say that I am sorry that this happen to you. I can feel your pain & betrayal that you must feel.

A year ago, my mom (who I live with) got mad at me for something stupid & took my name off the Quick Deed which would have insured me of getting the house. Had she died right than I would of had to go through probate, which I didn't have the money. Therefore, my BF & I could have become homeless. And my mother wanted us to move in with her in the first place. However, when I found out what she did I simply told her that my BF & I are moving out and I express how hurt & betayed I felt. She change the Quick Deed back into my name.
I feel your pain!
As I was typing this it gave me an idea. Get on google and type register deeds with your city and state. Once you are on the deed page put in your mom's address hit search. You can find out what kind of deed your mom had & who's name is on it. This may not help you, but it is worth a try. For Quick Deeds the person your leaving your house to does not have to sign any paperwork in most states.
You also can go to your city home page and find deeds search. Just thought about the short cut, sorry.

I believe that you got some really good advice here. I pray that things work out for you.

God bless you.
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This is another excellent example of the importance of a caregiver contract which compensates the caregiver on a real-time, pay as you go basis.
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gdaughter Nov 2018
For sure. And then you have my father of the greatest generation, who I took to one of the alleged "best" elder law people, who was first a social worker, who responded to my initial note by acting as if I was a potentially exploitative daughter (NOT). I took him to the damn appt and instead of asking if if he wanted me to be present in private, she totally excluded me. She told him/addressed the issue of a caregiver agreement but I don't think she adequately EDUCATED him. He always has been very naive and simply believes in women's work and family dedication. So my sibling is off in FL and NEVER has done a thing, while I cook, clean, escort, advocate, shop, bill pay, research, coordinate and everything else to the point of exhaustion. ANd things are set up in the will so that the estate is evenly divided. However, I have lived with them forever, and have provided care the past two years + so my case is pretty strong if it comes to that. I also keep a calendar book and jot down what I've done as back up. Others have noted that even professional caregivers do not work 24/7 without a day off. PS the original elder law attorney changed firms giving us an opportunity to switch and find a much better person. THe first made a no doubt deliberate error in the paperwork which essentially forbid me as POA to give "gifts" (as in making donations my parents asked me to), so for that one sentence change we had to have the whole form redone.
While others are telling you how to feel, I would recommend you acknowledge how you feel and let those feelings out in a safe container (place, like a therapist's office or trusting friend/family member-spouse).

I would not promote judgments and insults towards others involved.
That doesn't do anyone any good. And, adding emotional fuel to the fire will not serve you in any way. Respond with clear thinking, not emotional ranting - get the emotional shock of it all out with whoever you feel safe with.

* I did not read from your words how your sister feels about this - and/or if she is willing to work with you to an equitable agreement, considering all the work you did.

If I were you, I would:
* Do self-care now more than ever. Whatever this means to you.
* Calmly talk to your sister. See where she is at. If you feel it is necessary, have a witness available when communicating with her.
* Contact an attorney that specializes in elder care / Wills.
* Do you have a copy of the will and/or can you get a copy?
* Was your mom of sound mind when she wrote it? Do you have medical documentation stating this?
* Was the Will updated or revision(s) made recently? Track this.
* Keep coming to this site for support. Filter through/out responses/'support' - read and heed what will really support you. Everyone has a different way of handling these things / situations. Gena
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Please hire an elder estate attorney for yourself now as others have said.
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Jada824 Nov 2018
I just spoke to an estate attorney & he told me these cases are very hard to prove & wanted a $7500 retainer!
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