Do I have to pay for dad's funeral because I have been using his Social Security money and not putting some of it away? - AgingCare.com

Do I have to pay for dad's funeral because I have been using his Social Security money and not putting some of it away?

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My elderly dad is living w/me. We put his ss check into our account. We pay all his expenses ie his life ins, health, food, clothing, anything he needs. He has about 500.000 left per month that just stays in there and goes toward the house. Is this acceptable? He is 93 years old w/alz. I take care of him w/no help. We have no funeral money set aside. My sister said that because i have his ss money she should not have to pay half of the funeral bill when the time comes. My husb and I dont think thats fair, cuz if he werent here, he would be in a nurs home, Or someone wold have to pay someone like me an hourly wage around the clock to take care of him. Please tell me who is right. We needed that extra money of his SS to run the house, so we felt we could use it because I take care of him, we can't take vacations and I am dedicated to him as if a job. Am I respsonible for his entire cost of funeral because I have been using part of his SS money and not putting some of it away? I dont have the money for the funeral now....but could come up w/half. What do I do? I explained everything to her and she knows all I do, but she wont sway from her story. Thank you. Carol

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Check online or with an Elderlaw attorney about setting up a Personal Service Contract and your dad can pay you out of his SS$ for all, or a portion, of the care you provide. Pay yourself the going rate of a home care aid....somewhere between $15-20/hour. Tell your sister what you are doing. If she would like to make $15-20/hour then let him stay with her some of the time so you can have a break. Some homes, perhaps hers, are not set up for permanent care giving, but she could have him "visit" her for a few days a month. If she really can't manage even that, then it's still all on you. If either of you is less affluent than the other, there is probably some animosity there. But any care above what he can pay for should be shared by both of you at the going rate to be "fair". The caregiver is never going to be "paid" enough for the physical or mental stress that being a caregiver brings with it. You will have to keep documented all the work he pays you to do, just like a HC Aid would do. This would be a job and you may have to pay income taxes depending on your family's annual income. It may stop your sister from begrudging you from keeping "his" money for yourself. You should also look into declaring him as a dependent on your federal & state taxes. There are also caregiver expenses that can be deducted; like mileage to take him to doctors appointments, haircuts, buying clothes, etc. You should also be "charging" his SS$ for his share of the electricity, heat/cooling, water, trash, homeowner's insurance (he is a resident of that home). Be sure to document for any Medicaid (in the future they will look back 5 years at any money he has "given you" or that you have "taken") as well as for your sister. It takes all of my mother-in-law's $1200 to pay for her bills each month (includes the food that she buys for breakfast & lunch that we don't share and 1/3 of the dinners we prepare), not including any payment for her room at our house or extra care when we hire an aid, cleaning lady or I do it for free. An attorney recommended that I should be paid for my services like bathing, hairdressing, dressing, cooking, driving...all the things that would have to be provided if I wasn't there. I bet your sister resents that you are "keeping dad's money for yourself". Only documentation will have a chance to open her eyes. Some people won't even believe the documentation (ever watch the news?!?) and then you have to decide if you forgive her for being selfish or shortsighted or if you end an unhealthy relationship. You have enough stress with your dad.
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Maybe you should present her with an itemized list of what it costs to care for your dad, including compensation for your time. Tell her you're willing to split the costs half way, and ask her to compensate you for her half.
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You are the one giving up your privacy, freedom, tIme and?living the stress of caregiving. I think your sister has a lot of nerve nit picking. If he were in a nursing home you would have the carefree life she lives. No one really realizes how hard it is to give up freedom. When mom moved in our grocery more than doubled because I always bought her things we would never eat. Snacks, puddings, breakfast bars, jellos and a bunch of munchies which she craved.
I'm sure you paid for meds too. Your sister is wrong. IMHO.
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Omg, thank you so much for that comment. That is exactly what my husband says, that i am home for him, that if we were to pay someone to care for him, his SS would be gone, and down the road will be worse, when I will have to really be by his bedside. I just wish I could get thru to her. My Husband wants to talk to her so bad about it, but I don't want to lose my sister over it. Yet, I feel I am entitled to it, and so wouldn't my dad think it and my mom rest her soul. I mean, I can't leave him alone at all, so I am home most of the time. I just want her to understand that His money is Not really his, it is to pay for his care, and that if that means to go towards bills to our house because I am sacrificing my time to do it, than that is what it is. If it were reverse, i would understand and i would be so grateful to my sister and i would definately pay half, if it were reversed. I think my husband is going to talk to her, because she is intuned that something is wrong w/him toward her. Thank you for that though, because i know we are right on this but all your comments are really helping and someone said I should show my sister everyones comments, because until you are a caregiver 24/7, no one knows, until they are in your shoes....Anyone else please comment. I love to hear more...Carol
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The money left after your fathers monthly expences is what is owed you for 24 hour care it is no longer "his". if he was in a N/H they would take everything
All he would get would be a few dollers a week as pocket money. Try talking to other funeral homes and request the lowest legal estimate. If your whole family can't afford that Dad will have to be cremated and his remains put in with mother. Under no circumstances should you and your husband use retirement money or go into debt for this. Talk to social services and see what they can suggest. if your sister still wants a fancy funeral she can arrange and pay for it. have a simple graveside ceremony and a gathering at home or one of dad's outdoor favorite places at the time or in the summer.Thoughts are with you
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Oh Jeannette, not here in NH.....The casket, which I am even getting online, which is legal now. But you even have to buy a vault now to protect the casket in NH...it is made of cement....it is about 1k. Then you even have to pay to dig the hole. We already have the plot and stone, thank God for my mothers funeral 4 years ago. The visiting, emambing etc....5k would not do it at all. 5k may do a cremation if that. Im not kidding you, its highway robbery.
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I think your father should pay for his funeral. All he can afford is $5,000? Then make arrangements that cost no more than $5,000. Is that possible? Oh, absolutely.
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Tessa, You just said one thing that hit the nail on the head...would my dad want to see me in debt over him, especially after how much he appreciates me taking care of him, as he always says it....the answer is ABSOLOUTELY NOT..would he want me to argue w/my husband over it, NO..would he want me to be unhappy about it and stress over it like I am, No, he is the most wonderful man you would ever want to meet. He loves us both and would never want me and my sister to never to talk.....so your right...i can only do what I can, and if i dont have the money, I dont have the money. So I will just have to give him the funeral that the money can afford after that it has to stop, unless she wants more, she will have to put in more. I cant do anymore than that..Your absolutely right...and the SS think she keeps saying is mute, I took care of him, I am sure he would understand that we needed that money, or my mom would too, rest her soul. My mom would be happy just knowing how much he is cared for and loved, and not be in a nursing home...because that is where he would be, or with my sister, which she could not do anyways. So as my husband says, we earned every penny that he contributed to this household....and whatever money if left to bury him, well that will have to be...Any more comments, i will still be glad to take...
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Hon, move on. Tell her what you can afford without her contribution and let her decide the outcome. Dead is dead, but life is for the living, and I'm sure your Dad would not want you to use up your saving or put yourself in debt. As for what you deserve - well many of the living deserve alot more than they get - and many, less so !! She is being so selfish, and I truly feel for you. Is she perhaps a bit like my younger sister - wanting to put on a show for others ? If your Dad is happy with a simple ceremony - what's her problem? Please don't fall out with your husband over this. Remember that while you can't choose your family, you can choose your friends, and I'm sure you have many. The bottom line is to be true to yourself and in time she'll get over it - or not,maybe........but what will you have lost. Will she pick up the pieces if you fall out with your husband? - I think not. Take care or yourself. You are a special person.
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ahh Tessa that made me feel so good thanks so much. Maybe your right, maybe I should let her see these comments from complete strangers, and the pull I am having with myself about this. that this is not coming easy to me, and taking my husband into consideration into and trying to protect her from his dispair. You sound like a wonderful sound person, and I appreciate what you said very much, I am just taking in everyones words and trying to make a decision. And when my Husband says I cant use the total money, then what, my dad only gets up to a certain part...like just the parlor, no church like SHE WANTS...He would have been happy just being cremated....but she would die...but hey if I dont have the money, she would have to put it in, but then I would lose her....When your dead your dead, but she said, he deserves a church etc...Ugh...this is literally making me ill, and I wanted to get this over with now, pre pay and get it done, but I dont have all the money.
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