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Over the past 3 or 4 years my relationship with my siblings have become strained. I no longer visit with my mother due to all the lies she is being told. I chose to stay away for my health and try to give her some peace from siblings putting me under a microscope and telling her lies about me.

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Oh yes, it could end up being around $300,000 after sale of the condo he currently lives in...depending on whether he ends up needing to be in next door assisted living facility,which brother has fought against tooth and nail in order to protect the assets from being used up by nursing care costs...it was definitely worth having an elder law attorney,but was told by controlling brother that a lawyer was not necessary,he could make a DIY will for him from internet....very frustrating,I know better....
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I know of a case where the son won. He contested a will based on the fact that the beneficiary drove drove the person to the lawyers office. When the time comes you may want to contest. Be prepared this can get ugly. Is there enough $$ in the will to make this worthwhile?
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My out of state brother also just had my 92 year old dad sign a third DIY will from the internet....told our dad he (dad) didn't have "enough $$" to require an estate lawyer to draw up a legal will....so he comes to town once a yr.,prints off a "revised" will,takes dad to bank for witness,and never sends me a copy,just tells me it is in a "locked box" at dad's bank...
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We all live in different states, which makes things a little tricky when it comes to real communication.
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She's not "legally incompetent." I did not want to put Mom through that trauma. We can prove it if we have to, but I honestly care about my mom and don't want to upset her. I'd rather rely on the testimony of doctors, relatives, neighbors, etc., if needed. Fortunately, my brother is in this with me--I'm not doing this alone. Admittedly, my sister has been doing the greater share of the work in taking care of our mom. She has no other immediate family, while my brother and I do have family, along with health concerns for our other family members. However, my sister will get angry at my mother and yell at her. My sister has some real issues. Believe me, I don't hate my sister--I feel sorry for her. Nevertheless, it's quite clear that she wants to me in control of everything. She'll complain about having to do too much, but she doesn't like the way anyone else does anything. She is discouraging other family members from visiting my mom, even my mom's sister who wants to go visit my mom for her birthday.
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penetiwnk, if she is incompetent, she can't be legitimately signing to change POAs or estate plans...lawyer up!
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Sorry my friends, but every time this subject comes up I think of vultures hovering about. And the weakest ones or late arrivals still having to fight for the scraps.
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Debbie, if it is just mom saying her Will has changed, she may be a bit confused. Dementia patients will relay old events as new ones. I can assure you that the witnesses can NOT be the beneficiaries, nor can the Notary Public be any part of the Will. I witnessed my father's Will and the only reason my signature was accepted by the court is that I wrote myself OUT of it, leaving his entire estate to his wife of 24 years. I did not disclose the Will to anyone, nor did he; even his wife did not know he had a Will. The day after he died she asked me "Did your father have a Will?" I said "Yes. You get everything." She was speechless. My two sisters, on the other hand, were not so enthused.
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I believe my sister has done the same thing. Just a few months ago, she was saying she wanted to declare our 90-year-old mother incompetent so that she could force her into assisted living. Then she mentioned she wanted to get things changed in the estate documents and wanted my assistance right away. When my brother and I told her that we need to see the proposed changed, she did not produce them. However, I think she might have been able to get our mom to sign papers without consulting us. How can I we find out for sure? Both my siblings and I have (or had) power-of-attorney in the original documents. This is really sad. Whether or not it's legal, it's unethical.
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Debbie1956, I feel the same isolation from my mother as you describe. I live out of state and about 800 mi from my mom and siblings. On my most recent visit with my mom in her senior apartment, she and I spent a week together and we did a lot of nice and meaningful things. I took her to places she wanted to go - the cemetery, driving to see our old house my husband and I lived in when we lived there, visiting the hospital she used to work at as a nurse, neighborhood I grew up in, etc. When my sister called while I was there, my mom told her what we did that day together: saying that "she" went to the cemetery and "she" put flowers on our relatives' graves, "she" went and saw where my brother used to live (I lived 3 houses away on the other side of the same street but she only said she drove by my brother's house - not mine) never mentioning me like I wasn't even with her! I drove the car and did everything with her, but in order to pacify my sister, who I no longer speak to due to the fact that she's a sociopath controlling our mother, my mom totally left me out of the conversation. That told me a lot about how my sister manipulates my mom into taking her side. She has to discount me and show loyalty to my sister in order to keep her happy and continuing to take care of her. I kind of understand, but it hurts none the less. My sister also accused me of hiding an item she had lost while I was there. When she found it inside my mom's bag containing her legal documents a month later in front of the family, she pretended she had no idea how it got in there and said that I must have hidden it in there while visiting. So my mom doesn't know who to believe, but my sister has her ear and is there in town, so the result is I get a cloud of suspicion over me that I can do nothing about. It is so painful when I am a good, honest and caring person to be slandered like that. But when you have a sociopath that is posturing for control and scheming to get her hands on the money, I am just part of the collateral damage as we go through this saga. I so sympathize with what you are going through. It is agonizing and all you can do is further distance yourself from them, sad to say. But try to stay in touch with your mom - they are so easily influence by the evil ones in our families that have an agenda. So sad.
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Debbie, climbing stairs and walking around a block in and of themsleves have almost NOTHING to do with driving skills. Driving is primarily about vision, then spatial perception, then judgement and attitude. People who cannot walk or even use their legs at all may be perfectly fine drivers given the right adaptations. Your mom deserved a behind the wheel evaluation with a specialized OT or at least a geriatric eval to determine mental ability to navigate, unless she was already having minor accidents, acquiring dents and scrapes that she could not account for, or doing unsafe things behind the wheel.

The shenanigans with the will might be nefarious in nature or not - you would likely have to have some other evidence of financial wrongdoing to deal with anything right away, but you might have every right to contest the will given their undue influence, and possibly by communicating to them that you WILL do just that if you cannot have information about the will and the changes you are making, might make them see it would be in their interest to let you in on what is happening and possibly make sure all is kosher with a really attorney who is not a beneficiary with an obvious conflict of interest. Maye get you own lawyer to assess the situation and write a letter if he or she finds it is appropriate.
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Thank you for your response samara. At the time I did some research for the requirements for family members deciding if an elderly parent should drive or not. On the Secretary of State website an elderly person should be able to climb a set of stairs and/or be able to walk around the block. My mother could do either not even close. That is all I could base it on.
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Re the age of 90--doesnt automatically mean you cannot drive safely, at that age, there are some individuals that can see well enough, react quickly & appropriate, and have advance -planning skills, still, to be able to drive safely. Just wanted to put that out there....every situation is different and needs judges on its own. But the will, that can only be changed by the mom, and not at daughter's coercion. Kids can whine all they want--its the parent who gets to decide what their will says. Sounds like things are very suspicious here; unfortunately is very expensive to "contest" a will once mom has died, but, it very tricky to talk with mom right now about her will now. Like a rock and a hard place, but the best time to get will "corrected" is now, while mom is still alive. Wishing you luck!
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Interesting post to follow ...Please
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Well that was quite breathtakingly hypocritical of them, then. Honestly, what can you say..? Hugs.
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no Dustien my mother does live alone. At one time it was me that insisted we set up a schedule to help my mother out. I would take her some meals about three or four times a week. The sisters wanted nothing to do with that they said she was capable of taking care of herself. It was me that went to them and insisted she stop driving she was about 90 then. They went to my mother and told her I was trying to run her life.
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This situation makes me super thankful my brother's and I see eye to eye in my father's case. Little bro and sis in law take care of him and get paid for it (Thanks in part to member's of this forum and especially MaggieMarshall ;-) )

Older bro and I are so glad they stepped up to the plate and volunteered to take over care so we could keep dad out of AL when he could no longer live alone. Are your sis's 24 hr caregivers? If so, maybe they feel they are entitled to get paid and so are getting mom to change the will to cover their sacrifices? Just guessing here.. They would be going about it wrong, if that's the case, but you might try putting yourself into their shoes. It might help with the communication if you could discern their motivation...
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Yes I am sure the witnesses are the beneficiaries. And yes that is what they did (GEO123) they closed accounts with others names on then and opened new ones with their names on it. I am assuming they told my mom that we were going to steal the money or take it after she died. Its no wonder she is afraid. She does not show signs of dementia....but she does seem to be afraid of them. She does seem to be easily persuaded. As a matter of fact my sister took a picture of her with her doctor at the doctors office. She posted it on face book stating that the doctor said she was in good health and of sound mind.
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Actually, Carol brings up a good point - you can't so easily remove a person. However, what you can do is close and reopen the account, but with fewer people on it. You don't need permission from everyone on the account to do that.
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Debbie, One thing about the bank accounts, if 2 or more people are on an account, 1 of them cannot remove anyone else. When my Dad passed away, Mom had to take his death certificate to the bank, before they would remove his name. The same thing happened , when my husband died. The only other way to be removed, is by consent of person being removed. Would it be possible to have a neutral family friend act as mediator for the siblings ? If at all possible this drama needs to end. Your Mom deserves peace in her final years of life. I know you are so hurt and feel you are fighting a losing battle. Just please do not give up trying to see your Mom. She is in a terrible position, caught between all of her children. She may not agree with the sister's actions at all, but may be afraid to cross them or disagree. As you say, THEY have taken over her life. I pray you will hang in there, for your Mom. God Bless
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Back to the issue of dementia: depending on how far along she is, she might not be competent and, thus, her signature on the new document is not necessarily valid. Having dementia does not automatically mean the person is incompetent, though.

As with the others, I would suggest an elder care lawyer be obtained to sort this out.

One comment I'll pass along from my mother's elder care lawyer, though, is that only one person should be POA of something. For example, only one person should be the medical POA or the financial POA. Thus, I wouldn't think having everyone on the bank accounts is necessarily a good idea. What he explained is that, while it's good to have communication and make decisions together, as much as possible, one person has to be in-charge - you can't do it by committee.

And, as financial POA for my mom, I'm not listed on her bank account, at all. She is the only person named as an account holder.
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I'm not a lawyer but know little bit--you need to find out if a will is valid if the witnesses are also beneficiaries.
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Debbie, your mother's situation really sucks and I'm sorry for it. So hard to reach someone who's not listening because she has other people around her stuffing her head with warped ideas. I understand that it must be impossible simply to leave it alone and not worry about it.

I suppose you could try keeping in touch with by sending her things that are hard TO misinterpret - cards, inexpensive little gifts ("I saw this and thought of you x" kind of thing). Of course that won't stop other people attributing ulterior motives to you, but at least you'll have tried? Really tough. Hugs.
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Thanks for your response Felidae. I have tried to leave it alone for a long time. It just rears its ugly head every once in a while and get I get worked up again. I am glad to have this site to keep my feet on the ground. I have no idea who is the POA. I am not in the loop.
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I would consider him or anyone making a positive move. But the Silly Sisters would put my mother through h*ll telling her how awful we are for making any kind of waves in there agenda. My main concern would be what they will fill her head with and what she wants to run with. I get it she seems to love all the drama to. I am more than ready to call a elder attorney to step in and take control of the situation. But can they really stop them from filling her head with all the negativity about us?
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Oh, blimey, Debbie. Big hug.

What meals were you taking her??? Eye of newt stew or something?!?!

You must feel sick at heart.

What is definitely no good is for the Silly Sisters to be to-ing and fro-ing with their DIY wills. Whoever's idea it is for all of that to be going on, whether it's them or your mother or a bit of both, it's daft and irresponsible.

The brother with the daughter, would you consider him up to throwing his weight around in a good cause?
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No my sister does not work for an Elder Care Attorney, Just general. I am not sure where to begin on why I don't go see my mother anymore. When I explain what has happened to my family...I say it is like a divorce but instead of the children being in the middle of the divorce it was my 90 year old mother. She was being told lies about some of her kids. But when you would go there or talk to her on the phone she would blurt out what she was being told. I always felt like I had to stand up for myself which then would turn into an argument. The more you stood up for your self the more it escalated the battle. She would then tell the other siblings what you said and they would stir up more lies. They took over all her bank accounts.....at one time my mother made sure she had all of us on one of her accounts.....now just the select few are on there. She gets told we want to throw her in a nursing home.....so she wont tell us when she doesn't feel good. When I would take her meals they would tell her that is what is making her sick.....that she should cook her own meals. So should the next step be to ask my mom if she wants to see a lawyer. Because when the sisters get hold of that they will make her even more afraid of us. That is what I try to avoid putting her through all of that. Having them just fill her with fear of her own kids.
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Debbie1956, does your sister work for an Elder Law attorney or a general attorney who draws up simple Wills, does divorces, and fights traffic tickets? If she is drawing up Wills on her own, I hope she works for an Elder Law attorney as specific language needs to be in place, otherwise one incorrect word could change how the Will is probated.

My parents had a general law attorney do their Will a few years ago... OMG I read it and it would be a can of worms because he had placed "or heirs" for the relatives they wanted to get a certain percentage.... or heirs would be ok for their blood relatives, but one person mentioned was a sister-in-law and "or heirs" could means her siblings and their children which my parents had never met.

Next week my parents have an appointment with an Elder Law attorney, to which I told them I would pay for the attorney to draw up a more current and correct language Will or Trust, plus updated POA's. Saving money tends to make my parents move faster even though they could afford to pay :P
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Hm. If your mother does have dementia, of course there is always the possibility that she is the one demanding to change her will as often as her underwear and your sisters are, rather officiously and piously, enabling her.

Whatever else you decide to do, I think the moral of the story is that communication is key. What opened the growing rift between you and your sisters?
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Hoot! If there was a will made ten years ago, drawn up by a real lawyer rather than an enthusiastic amateur, and your ugly (if you'll forgive my judging - I find characterisation helpful to my memory) sisters have been playing silly beggars drawing up home made ones for their own slightly peculiar amusement every time the wind changes… I'm just picturing the hay that could be made of that situation in a probate court. You'll all be donating every penny to lawyers.

Your brother, father of the talkative niece, is absolutely right. Time for him to grasp the nettle, put his foot down, and nip all this nonsense in the bud - plus any other metaphors you'd care to add to the mix. This could be one occasion when the old-fashioned preference for putting boys in charge works in everyone's favour, for a change. Is there a sort of Alpha Brother whom pretty much everyone (but especially your mother) trusts and respects? Because I nominate him to sort the will out once and for all. With the aid of a reputable elder attorney, of course. Not one from your sister's firm, by the way, in case that isn't incredibly obvious.

More worrying is your semi-estrangement from your mother, and the evil that has been worked there. I'm sorry for you, but I'm sorrier for your mother because she is helpless and can't, for example, come on to the forum for support. Keep calling her, won't you? I really hope things improve.

It's just a thought: ugly sisters aside, is it possible that dementia or a similar mental decline is distorting your mother's image of you?
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