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My elderly father is now unable to live alone and hospitalized. Since I have POA, I have been paying his bills and sifting through his finances. I am trying to make his money last as long as possible for him. However, I have found in the past few years multiple times that family members have taken large sums of cash from him. I have even found where a neighbor lady was getting money from him. This makes me so angry! I am one of three children. I have always been financially independent and never needed money from a parent. I understand people might get in a bad situation and need help, but this is just plain robbery. Taking thousands of dollars from an 80+ year old man is theft! The hard part is that now he is hospitalized and is having problems with his mind, I'm afraid they are going to try to take his every last cent. I am considering hiring an attorney, but I'm not sure if there is anything that can be done. I feel so helpless trying to protect my father from his own children. Any advice is greatly appreciated.

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Hire an attorney pronto! If you are POA move his money to another financial institution. Contact all banks or financial institutions and tell them what's going on and provide them with the POA. Contact Adult Protective Services - you have an obligation to do that. But definitely at least have a no cost CONSULTATION with an elder law attorney. Please do this for your dad. Hang in there. I hope the best for you all... XO 🙏🏾
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Wow, MisFit, I'm so sorry for the mess you have had to go through with your family. That is unreal that they stooped so low as to try to get your dad to make a video will giving everything to one sister! Her husband sounds like a real hustler...what vultures! My situation is that the sibling in control of everything with our mom is the also the vulture. So it is totally in her hands to do whatever she wants with my mom's money. She has all the control and all the access to all financial accounts, documents, everything. What did my parents expect when they put the liar/thief of the family in charge of everything? What could go wrong??
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A little twist to the ending of this story. One sister and spouse went to hospice to see dad. The spouse attempted to coerce Dad and make a video Will where dad gives everything to the one sister. Dad was weak and on pain medication, but he still wouldn't allow them to manipulate him. He's a tough old dude. The spouse even told hospice he was an attorney so they wouldn't get concerned about what was going on in Dad's room. Regardless, a deathbed Will would not be recognized even if they had been successful. Dad already had a formal Will in place and has for a long time. My attorney friend checked legal records through the pacer website and found where the spouse has filed numerous lawsuits for profit (and lost) against several places including his employer. This is more criminal than I had even imagined. Now I am so glad that we had the surveillance equipment set up when they were pilfering through dad's home while he was in hospice. This along with photos taken of every area for reference. I felt a little paranoid about it, but I guess they weren't expecting it since I was so nice to them. I really hoped I was being overly cautious, but I was given good direction. My attorney friend advised me well, to never trust anyone in these situations. Be nice but don't be stupid. Get good advice and follow it. If you have good family, be thankful. My dad passed away and this saga will continue for a while I'm certain. I miss him so much. Thanks for all the wonderful support.
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Misfit file a police report you are the poa.
Hope you have a durable clause because general poa is nolonger any good after mental impaired. Makesure you have durable poa and mentalhealth and healthcare surrogate with financial poa.
Going to house while hes not there is burgulary. If he is not mentally capable abuse of a vunerable person at least.
This will be the only way you will get any respect for him. Maybe a wakeup call for them too.
The police report covers you from accuzations of taking stuff you are the poa so you are despo sible now for him Nd his.
Sorry its so tough. Bless you
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I agree with geewiz - change the locks. When my parents moved from their home of 50 years into IL they were both recovering from illness/surgery. In spite of my every efforts over several weeks, they didn't make a single decision regarding what they wanted to take so come moving day I had to decide for them. Next came getting the house ready to sell but first my brothers and I had to deal with all the stuff left behind. At first I had the only key to the house - the way my parents wanted it. So when my brothers wanted to get in to take things they wanted to keep I had to drive 30 minutes and meet them there, wait while they did their thing then lock up when finished. After doing this roughly three times each brother I was weary of it - plus it made me sad AND I was dealing with my folks in their new place. So - after a while I decided to let each brother have a key. HUGE mistake! While with me brothers were very well behaved, not overly greedy and respectful. Then my oldest brother asked if he could bring his adult sons, a daughter-in-law and his wife to select some things. They went on a Saturday and I went over on the next day to assess what was left. I was dumbstruck with what I found! To be honest vandals would have shown more respect. In my dads office - shelves of neatly stacked files just swept onto the floor. In every room cupboards and drawers just dumped out everywhere with doors left hanging open - nothing put back where it was. Nicnacks of my moms broken and left where they fell...it was like drug addicts looking for meth! Then to make it worst, unbeknownst to me - a few days later my parents had decided to go back to the house to pick up a few things. Needless to say, they were stunned and heartbroken! Morale of my story - change locks, change accounts, change banks, change credit cards. Trust no one. It's so very sad but do whatever it takes to keep the "vultures" from feeding off your dad. People like this have no shame.
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Misfit, change the locks and let the chips fall where they may.
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I feel like I have no control looking out for dad. One sister just went in to his house while he is in hospice and took as she wanted. This makes me so upset for him. People have no respect. He is still alive. Having POA is no good when you are dealing with vultures.
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I am horrified at your predicament. My elderly parents gave me total control over their finances some 15 years ago. I have kept meticulous records and keep the most recent five years of bank statements. Recently they moved into a care home and I had to sell their house to pay the fees. After Mum died last year (96) I have POA on Dad. I consolidated all their accounts and have kept records and receipts even on mundane things like his taxi fares, clothes, toiletries and treats in addition to the monthly care home fees and personal allowance. This protects both him and me as everything can be accounted for. Take control and keep records.
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Do you know these people? If yes, how about sending a registered letter to each one saying your father is no longer their "bank" as of this date? Maybe get a lawyer to draft it? just an idea
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I agree with removing all assets and valuable papers from the house. I would get a safe deposit box and if you are worried about his bank accounts, our attorney told us to close out the accounts and move everything to a new bank. I was worried about a sibling having access to my Mother's money and I shut down all accounts - consolidated them to one bank and one credit union. Sent her POA to every account she has - every utility company, bank, credit card, physicians office, etc. then establish online access to all accounts. Get email or text notifications for any activity on the accounts. Be aware. I would also consult with the attorney that set up the POA - if he/she is an elder law attorney and ask about a guardianship.
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I explained to my dad that money was stolen from his account and when he realised that it was true, he changed his account numbers. Perhaps you can do the same with your mom, if you think you can make her understand.
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Hi 1RareFind, His money was always paid and kept in a bank account and still is, but before his progressive dementia, he liked having spending money on him and at night he would put it UNDER the mattress : ). I thought it was sad that he had to resort to something so drastic, but money he kept in his wardrobe, also got stolen. At that age (80) he was still very lucid and no problem with dementia, and he wanted to have money with him, instead of a debit card, being from the old school.
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Hospice has lawyers part of hospice. Maybe way to go.
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Thanks for the great advice. There were several things I was not aware of and I am working on to protect dad better.

MY HOPE:
I hope it takes all of dad's money to provide him with the best care he can get. I hope they take his house along with everything else of value. I hope he has the best doctors and nurses, is comfortable, and goes peacefully in the end. And in the end, I hope there is absolutely nothing left. Because in the end, money does not matter, and it is the root of all evil. The vultures will be so disappointed.
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As having POA, I am assuming your legal papers include everything involving money. Change all bank accounts, and if he receives social security, you & he will have to go to social security, get the form to have his doctor fill out, which will make you Representative Payee. Social security does not recognize a POA.
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It makes me sick to my stomach how some people are. My brother did this type of thing to my dad, and some of his neighbors too. My brother asked my dad for over 2,000, dad said no, so brother actually vandalized dads property in retaliation, and did it in a way that dad couldn't miss is, a 52 year old man behaves this way. Cash disappeared from dads house while he was in the hospital a few months following the request for said funds. I found out about this because dad told me about it, but I think often our parents are proud, who wants to admit they've been ripped off? It's sad when you see the fear on your dads face over a siblings behavior, my dad is afraid of my brother, he will agree with anything he says just to appease him. Neighbors got dad to pay for part of their fences saying that way he could connect a fence to it, this is bs, and they knew it, he couldn't even maintain his home, fencing his property was the last thing he could do. Others got him to even pay for snow removal on their driveways. He now lives with me, I have DPOA and we are Trustees together of his trust fund, and let me tell you, when you are taking care of a parent, you are protecting them with their health and well being, but you are a guard against criminals, and often the only thing that stands between a vulnerable parent and scum as far as I'm concerned. I've been threatened physically and my brother actually threatened me with lawsuits when I told him I had video security in my home, he has four criminal records, for assault, arson, previous vandalism and the forth is a probably another assault. And I deal with this alone. He even got up in my face, when I didn't back down and got back, it scared him, he didn't expect that. Sick. The fact that you have emails showing their request for funds is evidence to match with record of anything he sent them, there are records of money orders, a receipt somewhere, or the bank can provide a copy of the receipt for that money order on that day or from that month even. I would also call an elder law attorney and press criminal charges, I'd at least look into it, nothing will stop them faster with future behaviors as this than a pending court date.
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You can restrict visitors where he is staying. Let the facility know about how he has been taken advantage of and you can give them an approved list of visitors and ask for limits for time also.
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Dad is in hospice and very weak and confused. I am continuing to do my job as POA advocating for him with healthcare decisions and keeping his household bills paid. I find out today that a friend of one of the "takers" paid dad a visit. I am concerned this friend who dad doesn't even know is visiting for the wrong reasons. He is several states away and I can only visit as my work time allows. I do speak with him and his nurses daily. He pushes the button for a nurse and doesn't even remember why. He is very confused and it bothers me a total stranger is visiting him in this condition. I want him to have caring people around, but this just seems weird. Can I ask the hospice to make sure these visits are supervised by staff?
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Does any of the money say "loan". If so, collect. 😊
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1RareFind sounds a little naive to me. I really don't believe those who have taken advantage of your dad would have bought themselves cars or homes. Drugs? You betcha. Vacations? Probably. And talking with the neighbor to inform her of what the plan was to protect your dad, absolutely not. I'm sure as the neighbor she has watched his decline. If informing her of anything, I would be telling her that she was being reported to the police for elder abuse. Freezing his account, changing banks excellent advise. Choosing to think the predators who have hurt your dad, no. Also, hospice doesn't always mean it's over. They are there giving awesome support. They may help guide you in this matter also. By the way, hospice is good for only 6 months at a time then it needs to be requested again. Let's all pray for the renewals for you.
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Excellent advice given in all the posts and only to add a small bit, a trip to an elder attorney might be good simply because they can send a letter to all in the emails who "borrowed" money from him and request a repayment plan. Sometimes a well-timed letter in forceful language makes a person start on the right track to repay their loan. They didn't think anyone would find out. It's really sad that drugs/alcohol/gambling takes a toll on some people that lead them to steal from their own family members but you must protect him by following all the advice of getting all the bank accounts in yours/his names so when the time comes you can write a final check for his final expenses. Any of his bills that need to be paid, you will have the money for payment. As for a will, if his estate is sizable, make sure the father prepares a will and those that stole from him will get a $1.00 until their loan is paid and then they may share or maybe not depending on his feelings. Personally, I would consult the police if I could prove a family member "encouraged him to send money" to them over and over. That takes a real kind of "dickhead" (excuse the wording) to steal from him. Since he's now in hospice, the end is fairly close and all options need to be done rather quickly. A trip to the bank should close out all accounts and reopen under different names and account numbers should solved the theft problems, especially with a letter sent that explains under no circumstances will any more money be taken out of the accounts and loans will be due to be repaid starting the next month, and a will should help with the other remaining money. I hope he has enough to pay his final expenses after they looted his accounts. Ask him what he wants done with other items such as furniture, household goods, etc. He may want to let some members come pick out what they want and give the rest to a women's shelter, especially the ones who support the women and children who try to escape from a battered home. They try to create a home once again and will need furniture and items, clothing, etc. Stand firm against the family members who you have emails from and PLEASE save all the emails documenting the removal of monies from his account no matter what the circumstances. You may need the evidence at a later date and let them do the explaining as to why money was taken out. An elder attorney can accomplish many things much faster than you can but whatever you decide to do, please do it quickly. Good luck in your pursuits and I hope you recapture some of the funds already stolen.
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All excellent responses. The concern I am faced with, as a daughter, is that I suspect the EPOA, my sister, is the one who has been 'skimming ' from our mothers account. Can't prove it as the second EPOA is possibly enabling this behaviour. Yes, have tried to have all sorts of civil discussions, meetings etc. All my questions have been ignored or I have been shut down. The law is on their side unless I take them to court where they will use, and get this, Mums money not their I own money for court and solicitor expenses. So if I challenge them it will only hurt my Mother. Unfortunately the daughter Mum chose to trust with her affairs was a mistaken chioce. It appears my sister has not been forthcoming and truthful to Mum or her sisters. Please be careful who you trust.
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That is so sad, seenypa...that your father had to literally sleep on his money to keep his step family from stealing it. Hard to believe what vultures some people can turn into when there is a little money they have the opportunity to get their hands on. Really makes me sick...I have learned more about the evil side of the human race in the past 10 years than I ever knew existed!! Glad there are a few of us decent people left, but I think we are outnumbered!!
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MisFit, all those e-mails you found will contribute to evidence of elder abuse; save them offline to a disk, make a duplicate just to be safe, and print them out. Take them with you when you go to the PD to file elder abuse charges.

This is so trying - your father going into hospice, financial abuse....what a challenging time it must be for you. I hope you do take some time to unwind and help ensure there is some calm to your days.
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Focus today on finding out which of your father's accounts had money taken out of them, and close them. Which ones were these? Did Dad send the money himself? You can use the POA to make that impossible now. A motto for the moment is "it has to stop now, from here forward". We may not be able to address all the loss so far, but make sure it stops now. Thats top priority in a cloudy time. Get the credit reports, and redirect any income checks from SS or pension to a new account. If you have a solid financial POA, you can do almost everything without a conservatorship.
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Misfit, considering hiring an atty???? Do it and now!!!
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Geewiz really does have some very good thoughts that I also had. In your situation, I would be curious so curious I'd really want to know why the neighbor lady is getting money from him. Is she doing some kind of test for him that he's paying her for? I would find out if there something she's doing for him and getting paid for it.

Is it also possible he may have been helping her out with something important enough to warrant legitimate help? I would check with these specific possibilities to see why she's getting money from him. If there's no legit reason, definitely let her know there will be no more money coming to her and explain why. All you have to do is explain that your dad is ill and needs what's left of his money. It may be that she may not even know what's really going on, so let her in on that secret as well. The idea is to give people the benefit of the doubt because if you're not around, you really don't know what's going on if no one tells you. I would find out as much as absolutely possible and I would find out why the family members are also getting money from him. If you find out where that money went and it was not a legitimate cause, I think you should go after each and everyone of them in court to restore the money. If anyone bought a brand-new luxury car, you can see if a lawyer can help you put a lien on the car or even a house if these items were bought on your dad's money. If it turns out they were really just taking advantage of him and they bought some serious valuable such as a home or car, I would definitely use the legal system to my advantage. I don't know if you made a police report, but you probably should. What you also need to do now is to take all proof of records and let the responding officer make copies of all of those records.
Your next step would be the prosecuting attorney's office with those same records. Press charges and give as much information about any homes or cars that were bought on your dad's money. Doesn't it seem funny that's why people get old and it ill that others who were younger and healthier tend to take advantage of an unfortunate situation? I know this for a fact because when I had a wreck in 2000, my shoes came up missing while I was unconscious. Yes, I know firsthand how people can unscrupulously take advantage of situations. If you can get guardianship of your dad, it will give you power over all aspects of his life including finances. You can as a guardian even have control over who spends time around him. I strongly agree that something needs done quickly before it's too late. What if there's someway to extend your dad's life and that money is the very key to what he needs? If he can't get what he needs because someone else talk all that money, they are to blame if he has an earlier death then he supposed to. They can blame themselves for being so selfish to not think of someone else's needs. I mean, someone else's life is at stake here, and getting that money back is what's going to be in his best favor. What I would do when you see the lawyer is find out if your dad has a will. Anyone with a lot of money and valuables should have one. Another thing you can do is see if your dad will liquidate everything and at least recoup some of that money. I don't know if anyone ever explain to him what's going on, but someone should explain to him that someone his own family has been stealing from him. He may try to deny it, but records don't lie as long as you can prove it. I would definitely have a lawyer in this type of case, especially if they can help you track down where all of that money went. If people opened a credit card in his name or even their own, I'm sure there is a way to track it down and put a stop to it. I do strongly encourage you to go after any homes or cars that were bought from your dad's money, especially if he never knew what happened.

seenypa, I'm just wondering about something you mentioned. What the heck was the money doing in the mattress instead of in a protected bank account? I'm very puzzled on this one because these days not many people always sleep with their money in their mattress. I heard of a sad situation on our local news years ago where some lady kept a very large amount of money in her mattress totaling right around at least 1 to 2,000,000. Are all knowing daughter surprised her with a new mattress and send the old one to the landfill, not knowing the money was inside that mattress until later when the mattress had already gone to the landfill. Remembering that is very sad story is exactly why I must ask you what the heck was the money doing in the mattress instead of in the bank? The bank can help you set up a protected account if you simply just explain the situation. The bank can put a stop or a freeze on the account and put selected peoples names into the system that tell them who not to give money to.
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I think this happens in a lot of families! i had a taste of this in my family too. and yah, you should be mad!! they are taking advantage of a senior, you dad!!
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Freeze his assets, since you are POA I think you can do this. It isn't right, and it needs to stop.
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Misfit, So glad you caught this activity. You can stop it going forward, can't stop what's already done, I wonder if there is a way to shame them if these are family members? I can understand a loan, but to request a m.o. is so obviously devious this person should be exposed.
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