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Great tips and information Igloo572!

For information on how to get power of attorney do a simple GOOGLE search for:

Durable Power of Attorney in STATE (florida, maryland, etc)
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You need to contact an elder care attorney in the state that she lives in
to do a durable POA and medical POA and update will if needed.
Depending on her assets, her debt could be a real bother or nothing at all.

First things first, how do you know she is being sued? i'm not trying to be sassy about this, but you need to see whatever paperwork there is. It could be a real debt (like unpaid credit card or car note), or unpaid service bill (home repair, plumber, etc) that could cause a mechanic's lien on her home, or a medical debt which insurance hasn't caught up with or she didn't file properly. You need to get all her financial current to see where she stands, and this will need to be done before you see attorney. Go through all her paperwork and start a file and make a copy of everything
that is important or problematic......

If you don't have the train of paperwork on her debts, you might want to send a "I don't believe I owe this debt and as this is the first I'm aware of it please provide documentation of ........" letter to every creditor and request documentation. They have to provide that to you within 30 days. Send letter certified mail with a return registered receipt. This runs about $5 via USPS per letter. Well worth it, too. You will need to do this as if your mother sent the letter - DO NOT SIGN HER NAME - just type her name on the letter. Do this on all debts that are problematic. This way you will get the information on the debt you'll need to give the attorney.

If she doens't have assets other than Social Security or other retirement then there isn't much for a creditor to attach. Other than letters and phone calls there is very little they can do. (They cannot call you or harrass you or your mother - if this is happening you can send them a letter that any & all communications must be sent in writing).

If she has a house, you want to protect that if she needs to live in it or sell it, you don't want a lien on it. If this is overwhelmingly credit card or other unsecured debt, the debt can go away with bankruptcy. An attorney can advise you best on all this. Good luck!
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