Do I need to retain an attorney if I'm my Mom's legal guardian to help make financial decisions?

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Not necessarily unless you feel you need one. Attorneys provide the legal aspect of dealing with how and when to spend money and how to keep records. Just make sure you document every penny you spend for mom, report to the court when you need to, and just be honest.
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I have individual durable power of attorney & it covers everything. We did pay dearly for setting up irrevocable trust & had everyting redone with our 4 children present. My husband is now in mild dementia. Knowing things are in order calms me & the children. I might add they get along & decisions must be at least 3 to 1 by them.
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You do not need legal advice & if you wish to obtain it, go to a Para-legal who specializes in it. The cost is so much less.

You have been given good advice from several people.
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As a Guardian you should not be paying their bills - that's a Conservator's job. To be safe, you should obtain both titles to cover your bases.

A Guardian is responsible for the person's well-being (medical, housing, personal cares, etc.), whereas a Conservator is responsible for their financial well-being (paying bills, finance, etc.).

When obtaining Guardianship, it's wise to also get a Conservatorship (perhaps not always the same person is assigned to both however) as if a person can't take care of their own personal needs, many times they cannot take care of their finances either.
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My husband, 90, has vascular dementia and often thinks that I am not his wife.. We have had a living Trust with living will included for 18 years. Is it necessary for me to get a POA also, or does this Trust/Living Will encompass that?
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I am in a situation right now where my mother is still her own POA for both finances and health. She has me doing her finances for her and I am trying to include her in decisions, however she is struggling with extreme fatigue which makes it a huge challenge . I have asked her to get herself checked out by the Dr. and she refuses. I also am faced with these memory tests that she has taken and we are waiting on the results. It is my understanding that legal competency in order to determine if she has capacity to sign and understand legal documents is a separate legal tests that would cost her 1500 out of pocket to pay for because insurance does not cover this. What is involved in this legal competency test?
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I usually advise that if you think you should see an attorney, then have n Elder Care Attorney review your plan, it will cost much less than a mistake will. One visit will probably be enough. I do this frequently and I usually suggest thing that will make the care better, or less expensive.
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Pam is right. Your county courthouse may have on it's website what is required for Guardians and how they report to the court.

Now out of curiosity, is there something within your mom's assets or financials that you need help with or are questioning? the reason I ask is that I have been executrix twice and probate court where those hearing are done is also where guardianship stuff is done. Spent more hours there then I ever thought but it was quite enlightening. What is saw is that true legal guardianship is pretty complex and paperwork filled. So often the person named as guardian is really often not in the loop of what the person's life was like before whatever happened that made them now need to have a guardian. They find themselves with insurance stuff, property, banking scattered who know where and debts that may or may not be paid. Pretty chaotic. if this is you, please take your time and do not rush into anything. There are a lot of those who will push you to do an annuity or other transfer of assets to "make things easier". Guardianship you need to get right and take your time to validate what they have and don't have before you make a major change or purchase. If someone is pressuring you on something, just say that you appreciate their concern and they need to provide whatever on paper and it will presented to the judge at your next guardianship hearing. That will clear out most who would take advantage of you. Good luck.
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You do not have to, you are fully empowered by the court. There is good information here, go to the Money and Legal tab at the top of the page and click on POA and Guardianship.
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