I’ll try and make this short. My sister and her husband live in mom’s house. Mom is retired, 82 and has short term memory loss and now, cancer. I live out of state and visit as much as I can, talk to her every day and offer some financial assistance. My sister because she helps pay mortgage and is a care giver tells me she owns the house with her husband. She is also POA. Though mom is still alive I made it very clear sister does not own the house until mom is no longer with us she is adamant that she and husband are partial owners. Paying mortgage does not make one the owner but she doesn’t let it sink in. I wanted to visit and spend more time with mom as I do not have the financial resources to pay for hotels this would be the best option. I would assist with some bills and spend time with mom walking, cooking etc. (whatever needs to be done). I am told I can stay at the house only after her my sister speaks to her husband. Now there have been NO domestic disputes whatsoever and I have no criminal record. Sister has a type a persona and controls all around her with an iron fist, unfortunately I do not agree. Given my mom’s fragile situation I did get upset over the issue and told her via phone. What legal reason does my sibling have to contest she owns the house and not allow family to stay? Sorry I’ve no one to turn to and I am frustrated that she acts in such poor manner given there are only the three of us left alive in the family sister, brother and mom. Any tips or opinions would be gladly reviewed even if not in my favor. Thanks!

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Let me make sure I get this right.

Your sister and her husband take care of your 82 year-old mother who has dementia and now cancer FOR FREE while also contributing financially to the household by paying the mortgage.

This is correct?

You have the audacity to complain about such a sweet, sweet deal where they take care of all the caregiving, and help with bills, and no one asks you for a damn thing.
Yet you expect them to make accommodations for you and family when anyone decides to visit.

Shame on you for being such an entitled ingrate.

I don't know you or your sister, but I'll tell you what I'd do in your sister's situation.
I'd get mom down to a lawyer right quick and have her Will changed and get my name put on the mortgage. I did do this. My mother was getting older and had made some bad financial decisions. I was able to help out otherwise the property would have been lost. I made sure it was all done legally so there'd be no question and no room for argument on who owns the property.

Your sister is not the one acting in a poor manner. You are. Maybe you'd do better to call her and ask if you can come and stay. Offer to buy groceries for the week and cook if she lets you come. Maybe actually express a little gratitude to your sister for taking care of your mother and don't start up with the 'you don't own the place' routine. Don't lay it on your sick elderly mother either to be the referee in your sibling rivalry.


-Try treating your sister and her husband with a little gratitude and basic respect. Maybe actually say THANK-YOU to them for all they do.

-Offer to buy a week's worth of groceries and do the cooking for a week if they let you come and visit. Offer to help out with some of the caregiving and household chores too
Helpful Answer (13)
Reply to BurntCaregiver
Jacquelinezr May 14, 2024
Yes to everything here!!
Okay, here are a few things:
1. This is your sister and brother-in-law's home you are talking about. Regardless of who originally purchased the home, they live here with your mother's blessing and they take care of the property (and her). It's their home. Why shouldn't guests in the home be subject to their approval?
2. From your description, your sister is mother's POA and sole caregiver. She's doing the heavy lifting, in my book that gives her the right to expect respect for her wishes and decisions.
3. I don't understand why she felt the need to defend her position including details on what expenses she and her husband pay toward your mother's and the home's upkeep. Could it be that you reacted aggressively to the information that she wished to speak to her husband about your visit?
4. As a mom myself, I assume that your mom would like for you and your siblings to get along and not create tension in the house during your visit. Now that she is sick, it is essential for her health and welfare as well that things remain calm. From the outside looking in, it doesn't seem like a good idea to have you there at all if this is what's going to happen.
5. What are you trying to accomplish here? I understand that you may feel sister is trying to shut you out by denying you a place to stay. Fighting with her about it is not only not likely to make her see things your way, but defeats the very purpose of a visit, which hopefully is intended to be helpful and a comfort to your mom.

I don't know if you are married, but I can tell you that consulting one's spouse before agreeing to something that will affect the spouse as well is considerate and thoughtful. Why didn't you just thank her and tell her you'll wait to hear back?

At this point, I'd either postpone this visit or plan to stay in a hotel. Try again later with a different approach.
Helpful Answer (12)
Reply to iameli

I saw in the thread that you were getting a heavy brow beating and felt everyone was siding with your sister. I’m not going to brow beat you, but I’m going to suggest maybe putting yourself in her shoes. Just in the couple of months I’ve started handling my mothers business matters and care I can tell you what your sister is doing is a thankless, unpaid and trying task. She’s keeping your mother afloat financially while ensuring she is getting care and probably providing meals and cleaning as well as transportation. My brother feels a lot like you do about your sister. He feels like I’m being controlling because I have a POA and access to her financials and I will not answer his questions about them. It is fishy to ask for balances and transactions. I do nothing with her accounts and simply help her utilize them to pay her bills when she’s in lucid moments. I try to give her those opportunities to make her own decisions so she doesn’t feel like a child which is why I blot him out of that knowledge. He insists she’s 100% dementia and I know she is not because I interact with her daily which is why he isn’t making medical decisions besides the fact my wife is a medical practitioner and the source I get some direction from. I know this means a hill of beans to you but my point is, when I’m handling everything it’s a very big wrench to throw in my routine to suddenly jump in or out of the picture when it’s convenient for him. I have to try to bring him up to speed then he argues and it just turns into a heated argument which i refuse to engage in.

While the home situation is different and she’s currently in a skilled facility getting rehab, she will not be able to go home after this and we are making accommodations for her to move into our home which is also our farm. I can see where if my brother was just telling me “hey I’m coming to visit mom for a week tomorrow and staying there (which is totally how he would operate)” I would be a bit put off and tell him I need to discuss with my wife. He has no idea what appointments, errands we have to take her to or what’s on our schedule.
try something like “hey sis, I want to visit mom, would you mind letting me stay a few days and when would be a good time?” You get more bees with honey than you do with poo, which mainly just brings flies. I’m running a lot of errands for her, interfacing with her attorney, doctor, rehab care team and handling her business affairs. Because of this I already have little time to myself because my wife can’t really help since she sees patients all day and can’t just take off work whenever. Perhaps your sister is just wore down and spends her free time caregiving and her husband pitches in after he gets off work and that’s why she’s checking with him, because she wants to say “do you think we can make some time for brother or should we make plans for another time soon.”

cooler heads prevail
Helpful Answer (12)
Reply to CajunKevin
KNance72 May 16, 2024
My Friend Use to say " You will get further ahead with Honey than vinegar . " Something Like that .
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Go online to the county tax records, county clerk's office and/or registrar of deeds to look up the property. The search will be free on the county's site. Owners will be listed.
Helpful Answer (11)
Reply to Fawnby

We can't discern who owns the house without checking the deed, but it is your sister's home. She has her hands full caring for your mother and you staying in the house will likely add to her burden, preparing a guest room, cooking, cleaning etc. She does get a say in that whether she owns the house or not. Stay in a hotel and try to be a help.
Helpful Answer (10)
Reply to TopsailJanet

Daugther moved in with Mom & is providing daily care.

Therefore, Mother's home is now also Daughter's home. (Not talking ownership or financial - just sense of *home*).

Son lives futher away, not able to be in the daily care team.

The Son does not live with Mom therefore is a guest in her home.

Guests are not entitled to invite themselves.

Good guests use manners to ask when/if appropriate to stay & pay for their own accomodation if not convenient.

To me it reads that SonSun feels entitled to *belong* in Mom's house due to... what?

Due to assumption that Mom's Will notes him as a part beneficiary to her property when she dies. That this THOUGHT (be it truth, assumption or imagination) overrides any right his Sister & her Husband have about who stays overnight in their now home/personal space.

See how that reads? Crazy.

SonSun, you said you view your sister as bossy & controlling, right?
Maybe she finds you bossy & entitled?
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Reply to Beatty
SonSun May 10, 2024
I never said I was entitled perhaps you didn't understand.

My mom is still very coherent however the sister as you and Alva are clearly have sided with based on your reply over rides my mothers decisions. She mom is not senile and still able to make decisions.

I pulled up the deed and its a life estate deed on the house which means if the original guarantor still lives in the house it is clearly their house.

I never stated I had access to the will so again your assuming and I am very aware I have no power over what ever mom wrote in it. That was her choice. Am I clear on that?

Again bossy? Beatty you should have your head checked as I never made one comment here indicating I was bossy merely the fact is it was the opposite way around. So how can one try and get along with family that is controlling ever single move one makes in their presence?

Calling someone crazy is clearly uncalled for and I am surprised how quickly your passing the judgement. Are you a licensed psychologist? I am sure not so please do not use that sort of vitriol.
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Don't send financial support and save that money to stay in a hotel. Personally, I don't let anyone stay in my house. I care for my 89 year old mother and family and friends can come visit, but I won't let anyone stay in the house bc I simply don't like it. Period. So make it easy on everyone and just save the money to stay in a hotel. I don't mean this in an ugly way, but thank God you're not the caregiver because it's incredibly hard and takes over your life. And careful that your sister doesn't fool your mother and start paperwork to eventually take the house. I'm not saying she will, but she may. Again, being caretaker is a brutal job and your sister got stuck with it.
Helpful Answer (9)
Reply to Jacquelinezr
NeedHelpWithMom May 14, 2024
So true, the last thing that a caregiver needs is to have guests in their home.

I cared for my mother too. I stopped hosting holiday gatherings in my home because I needed a break!

People who have never been in a caregiving situation have absolutely no idea how difficult it becomes.

In fact, one of my favorite Thanksgiving dinners was when I announced to my family, “This year I will be walking on the beach in Florida!”

I told my brothers that I wasn’t cooking but they were more than welcome to come stay with mom while I was gone, and cook dinner for her. To my delight, they did! If they hadn’t, I had arranged to hire someone to stay with Mom.

I loved my mother dearly but my gosh, we need to take breaks from caregiving to maintain our own wellbeing.
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Tip- Play nice with sister and don't demand things you are not entitled to at the moment. Your sister holds the power here, you need to be agreeable to her so I would focus on mending or improving your relationship with her.
Helpful Answer (8)
Reply to mstrbill
SonSun May 10, 2024
I have tried but theres only so much condescension one can tolerate. Really I tried to be very diplomatic and swallow my pride.
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I went through most of the things that you're saying but I was the POA and this put me in the same situation as your sister. Sister only gets whatever, after mom passes away and believe me there's nothing extra she's going to get after all she's been doing! If mom has cancer, sister will probably end up selling the home to continue moms care. The will that you're so concerned about had to be notarized by someone so go to them! I'm not saying that she's right or wrong but she has no obligation to tell you. My mother had 6 garbage bags full of papers that I had to sort through in order to do her taxes and all I kept hearing was "where's the will??" I gave him a copy, then it was how much money does she have?? I told him that too! He still wasn't satisfied so I said "fine, you be POA!" No,don't want that responsibility. He drove me nuts!!! Like I don't have anything else to do??? I moved her to assisted living/MC, no help from him and sold the house( removed the contents out and cleaned) and arranged the funeral along with doing all her financial accounts for years. Then it was where's my share!!! It was equally divided and all I received was grief! He didn't like the way I handled it? Law says you can't have any distribution for 30 days after death, I had to hold onto some because of taxes and overpayment of SS that needed to be returned. I finally got it done. I was set back financially by leaving work for Dr appointments and leave of absence to clean the house along with any other thing she needed. You just have to understand that she has a lot going on and to be patient. I've disowned my brother after mom died, I can't forgive him for being such a pain in my butt! He kept saying I can't trust you,but Mom did. I didn't ask to be POA ,I didn't want it but it was designated to me. You should be grateful that you still have a mom! When you become a caregiver you lose that relationship. Your sister is now a financial advisor, Healthcare coordinator. She won't have the love and attention that you can enjoy. You can't please everyone and sister needs to take care of herself in order to be there for Mom. Don't make waves,for moms sake too!
Helpful Answer (8)
Reply to JuliaH

You should be thankful Your sister and Husband care for your Mother . Why can't your Mother stay in your home for a couple weeks ?
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Reply to KNance72

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