As POA & primary caregiver, am I responsible for my parents' well-being when I'm at work?

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I work only on weekends (but need to keep my job) and am home with my parents all day, every day. I have hired a home-care company to help care for my parents when I'm at work on the weekends, but my mother has thrown such a fit and gotten so upset about having someone come to the house (basically financial concern) that I've had to cancel the home care. My dad has Alzheimers and gets Hospice care 5 days a week for about 1.5 hours (but my mom interferes there too). If something happens to my parents when they are alone: fall, accident etc. am I legally responsible for their well-being since I am their POA and primary care-giver? I think I am and I'm trying to use this as a last ditch effort to get my mom to agree to help on the weekends and to stop "helping" with dad when the hospice caregivers are there because she is 78 and not in good health herself. It seems to me the only way she'll listen to me, is if she's convinced, by someone other than me, that if something happens to them I could be in legal trouble (heard of a case where a woman was arrested when her mom fell and she wasn't there). Does anyone know the actual laws about this? Thanks.

Kathy

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The short answer is, yes -- just as you would be responsible for your child's well-being while you were at work. Your mom's fit may be because she feels herself losing control in yet one more area of her life. Try sitting down with her and explaining the legal ramifications along with reassuring her that the "help" is not necessarily for her but for you (for your legal protection). She may or may not go for it. But it's worth a try. If she's adamant, try telling her that if she can't accept help for your dad, she's the one who will have to move: he needs help while you're gone, she can't provide it; someone must; therefore.... No, you're not forcing her to make a bad decision: SHE'S forcing YOU. Your love is not in question; her's is. You want the best for both of your parents; she apparently only what makes her feel good. There's no need to be crass and throw these insights in her face (however you may be tempted to). But they're helpful responses to others who question your choices. Remember, you are the sane one; you are going to outlive this situation. You love your parents. But you need to make the choice that is right for all of you (with the information you have; not some future insight or discovery). Good luck and my prayers go with you.
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I have both Mom and Dad with us, both are 88. Dad is not in good health but he is mobile. Mom is post stroke with Parkinsons and can not stand on her own. Dad is the one who won't listen and interferes. I also have POA. Both parents are of sound mind. I asked this same question of Mom's Doctor and our Health Care Aid program. Both told me that as long as Dad is of sound mind he is considered the primary caregiver and my responsibilities are on familial and not legal.
I wish you luck, this is a hard job.
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Well every state has dofferent laws but if this is whats going on contact you aging dept there or state i know here where i am if you are caring and is D.P.O.A..you are responsible for the well being of the person you are caring for ..but all laws are different so check with a social worker thru the hospice you have coming in or the aging care in your state...you mom seems to be having problems of accepting help for herself and your dad....Good Luck!!!
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I am not an attorney, but I have medical & financial POA for my dad. Dad is 88 ives with us & has Alzheimer's, dementia, CHF & bleeding on the brain. Every POA contract is different and varies according to state law. It is my understanding I am legally responsible for the health & well being of my father. My father may not listen to me on some things, but will accept other's opinions. I'm not sure if this is the dementia or his personal attitude towards me. It's frustrating, isn't it? We tried respite care once & my dad complained so much we never did it again. Is there a way to engage your mom & divert her attention when the caregivers are there? I imagine she does not want to move out & leave her husband. You are a loving daughter & I wish you well.
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