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I placed a question here close to one year ago, at that time a younger brother had kidnapped my elderly father, age 88. He absconded to the state of Utah, we did everything humanly possible to stop his illegal removal from an Alzheimer's facility, no authorities would help because it was a family member involved in the abduction and also removing all his bank accounts. To make a long story somewhat shorter, after five months my father was returned to Ohio and without knowledge to the rest of the family, dropped in an Alzheimer's facility over 60 miles from his original home. In the meantime my brother sold his home, changed the will to leave everything to him. The family was notified of his whereabouts just 2 hours before he was to be cremated, as he had passed away at said facility of an infection brought on by complications of a knee replacement my brother had forced him to have while in Utah (possibly so he could not come home on his own?)
We have contacted more than one attorney and most want between $5-$10,000 to handle this case. My question is basically, why do I need to sue when laws were broken, basic kidnapping, taking control of money and selling the home of an elderly person suffering from dementia and Alzheimer's? Where do I turn? Law enforcement doesn't deal with elder law, any answers or opinions?
P.S. this brother also tried to legally stop our family from having a memorial service for my father who served in the Navy in WW 2, but we gave him a military burial and 21 gun salute, despite my (no longer considered my brother) efforts. A Happy New Year to all !

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If the police won't help, make 'em. Also, get the DA after your brother, and after this is all done, just cut your brother off. He is no longer a part of your life
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I think Ferris1 has the best advice. If your case goes to a criminal court, you are looking at $50-70,000 and for what? If your dad were alive, the battle for good care would matter. It's too late now. Sorry you had to lose your dad like that and deal with a sorry excuse of a brother.
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I can tell that you are deeply hurt and angered by your brother's actions.

It appears that the knee operation was the unresolved disagreement. There is no kidnapping, only a son and father taking a trip. There is no illegal removal from the facility, as all that is necessary is a doctors order (easy to get). He couldn't sell the house unless his name was on it or he was the POA, and he probably needed it for the 4 months in a Utah facility.(24,000- 84,000) for short-term respite rates and no telling what the co-pay is on the knee operation.

A will is not stone-clad. It is only a wish list. If only his name is on it (have you seen it?), it is easily contested. But if there are no other assets then there will probably be no probate. You have two years after death to force the probate (Florida law). But probably the money has all been spent on your Dad's care.

Sorry for your loss. These are trying times.
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My brother talked my parents into taking out a mortgage on their completely paid for home (20 years ago)....he sweet talked them into "investing" in his fly by night schemes. None of the rest of us kids knew about this, until the time came to sell the house and pay off the addition to my brother's home that he had added to move mother and dad into. VERY embarrassed, dad had to admit to my brother what the other brother had done. Of course the $100,000+ was long gone, and yes, we could have gone after him for theft---but in the interest of just making dad's EOL peaceful--we let it go. When mother dies, brother who took parents in will inherit everything (not that much). He still will not be made "whole" by any means.
At the time we were angriest and were trying to pursue this legally, we were quoted a $10,000 retainer fee, and hourly fees after that. That was just throwing good money after bad. Brother didn't HAVE the money and was in and out of jail,. so what would have been the point?
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I am my mom's primary caregiver. I have a do-nothing sister who has seen my mom less than 10 times in the last 15 years. Mom is now in a nursing home and has been for over 2 years. About a year ago, I found out from an aunt that my sister has asked her to borrow money to come from her home state of Virginia to our home state of NY, to get my mother and bring her to live in Virginia with her. At this time I was doing all of my mother's cooking, grocery shopping, bills, doctor appmts, etc. My sister was off in la-la land living her life and calling mom 5x a year (birthday, mother's day, new years day, thanksgiving, and Christmas. Cold, huh?) So I couldn't help but wonder, what's this sudden interest in my mother?

You probably figured that if sis needed to borrow money for bus fare, her finances aren't the best. She has 2 mortgages (she's only paying one), and I'm surprised she even still has a home. Our mom, on the other hand, had a social security check that would more than cover the second mortgage payment. I'm sure she wanted mom's social security!

So you see, it happens. Had my sister had a little more money in the bank, I could have been the one writing this post!
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Agingmyself offers good insight into what law enforcement professionals might see as the gist of the criminal issues, and raises the same questions that I would have asked also, to get at the heart of the matter and determine what happened, and importantly, how it happened.

Igloo makes good points about the potential cost of litigation. No case like yours could be handled for $5L to $10K. I'm thinking this is more likely the cost of a retainer.

But first you'll need to separate the legal vs. the criminal issues.

These are some of the costs that would be incurred in a actual lawsuit:

Record copying costs would include estate planning documents, medical records including discharge instructions from any facility in which your father was placed during the period of time in question as well as having those records reviewed by professionals, not only to determine competency but other issues, including the reason for removal of your father by your brother.

A background investigation, generally through hiring a private investigator, would probably be initiated to investigate your claims in apparently 2 states.

Co-counsel might have to be obtained to determine jurisdiction of filing, whether in the state of residency at the initial facility, in Utah, or in the state of death. Multiple jurisdictional issues complicate the matter and could raise the costs of the prep work as well as any trial.

If it were determined to be better to file in another state, the costs of the attorney you hired as well as co-counsel to manage the litigation would be incurred. Attorneys in my experience do this when cases are out of their jurisdiction; they're not going to gamble on handling a case out of their jurisdiction w/o local counsel.

Then there are the witnesses, who would need to be interviewed and subpoenaed if the case went to trial.

$5 to 10K would be a drop in a bucket. I can easily see a suit like this approaching $75K and upward.

And a very important issue for the attorney(s) is whether or not you have to financial assets to fund this kind of suit.
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Don't let the sorry sapsucker win. It won't happen in the court system, it will happen in your heart. Right now, all this anger is burning your candle at both ends. When you think about it, it fans the flames and makes it burn brighter and faster. That is the evil one winning.

The opposite of love is not hate, it is indifference. When you reach the point of refusing to let that evil one control your emotions, then you start winning. He won't be shortening your candle anymore.

I chose to rest in the knowledge that the Lord above is keeping a record of our works in His great Book of Life. Come Judgement Day, I know that He will be just. There are so many who took advantage of my mthr, but they will have their due.
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I think I can see why you're not getting law enforcement assistance. I write this to be blunt, and hopefully lend insight, not to create hard feelings or unnecessarily hurt or upset you.

What I see from reading the post is a lot of allegations, a lot of hostility, and anger. There also seem to be many suppositions; if you have documentation to support these conclusions, that's a different story.

But if I were someone you were asking for help, I would ask you to bring in ALL the documentation you have to support the allegations, then I'd go through it.

Otherwise, it seems as though you're drawing conclusions without supporting evidence.

Again, I write this to hopefully shed some light on why you haven't gotten help, not to further upset you.
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Not sure how to edit. My post above should say "If dad was in a position to need a POA, then he COULD NOT change the will mentally.
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Easy for you to say. A felony is a felony! The District Attorney should prosecute.
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I think you could be wrong about the will. If dad was in a position he needed a POA, then mentally he could revise the will. You can check the facility dad from which dad was moved. They will have assessment forms on him that describe "to a T" what his mental capability was there (required by the govt). Use this as your starting point to show why the will could not be changed nor could he appoint a POA (would have required guardianship). Am I right on this legal persons on this Forum?
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Puterpilot - not to sound harsh, but if you view 5k -10k as an "expensive atty." that you perhaps can't afford, you do not have the resource$ to carry through in doing anything to your younger brother. As GladinHere said, it's just a retainer. It will be just the start of costs as you have multiple states so legal for each plus they will hire forensic accountants & paralegal research at various courthouses that you will pay for - as you will sign a contract -whether or not you "win" or have your lawsuit dismissed. It might be a better use of $ for you to get grief & bereavement counseling.
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I am Sick of everybody telling you to forget and move on! Thats easy for other people to say.
My sister-in Law thought that when my Mother signed a POA for her to pay her bills, she thought she had won the lottery. She immediately took all of Mothers savings and spent it. She changed Mothers life insurance policies to benefits to my brother.
There are Laws against that!
I agree that she should be prosecuted by the District Attorney's office. Not me.
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If you can handle the incredible stress and anxiety that will inevitably come with trying to sue your brother--go ahead. If this is simply about revenge--take a deep breath and think again. There would have to be a great deal of money involved to make hiring an attorney and chasing down the truth worthwhile.
No family EVER feels "whole" after someone dies and the estate is distributed. You have suffered a great loss, for which I am sorry. Going after your brother--well, only you can make that call. You've gotten good advice. Sometimes it's better to walk away with your head held high and let it go.
In truth, our parents "OWE" us nothing when they die.
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I just want to thank all who responded, though this is a very, very complicated case. My first concern was my fathers state of mind at the time he was taken, I'm sure he felt trapped in a facility where he did not want to be and my younger brother was his "savior", in his mind ( he was not legal POA, but coerced Dad into making him POA once in Utah and also rewriting his will, so going to probate with his original will would be pointless.) . I can't help but think he (my father) held it against my other brother (who was legal POA at the time) and myself for being in a home, (we did not place him there, the medical professionals did). My younger brother took advantage of the situation.I've even thought of suing the home for allowing him to leave the facility?
Sorry but the hurt just doesn't go away.
Apparently there is only justice for those who can afford to litigate with expensive attorneys. Again, thank you for your comments.
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1) No legal authority believed that Dad was being kidnapped, nor did the facility, evidently, when you were doing "everything humanly possible" to prevent his removal a year ago. That could be why law enforcement is not interested in revisiting the case now, and btw, that supports your brother's side of the story if you do sue him.
2) If bro had Dad's POA, bro had legal authority to act in Dad's behalf. If he abused that authority, it's a civil matter, not criminal.
So, law enforcement leaves it up to the injured party to seek damages in court.
3) If bro did not have POA, and he forged documents or coerced Dad to do things against his will or best interest, can you proove that? If you are expecting an attorney to research and proove it, you are going to pay a lot for that work. And they may not be able to find adequate proof anyway.
4) My advice, unless Dad had a really high net worth that you are positive you can claim, or you just want to harrass your brother, just forgive and live your life. If it's not worth it to you to pay an attorney just to make your brother suffer through a law suit, then forget it.
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The main question here is, "Did your brother have POA"? If he did, then there is probably not much you can do.
Second, "Was your father on Medicaid"? If yes, THEY will go after any money assets your father had.
Our state (Mississippi) is tough on elder abuse/fraud. I hope yours is also.
It is my understanding that a will CANNOT be changed by a POA, so you may have a case there (Is it financially enough for you to retain a lawyer?).
If you find no help, then I hope you will put this behind you and not let it ruin your life. As a group, we need to legislate for better laws regarding caregiving and elder protection.
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I would stop trying to get the police department interested in the case. It sounds like something that took place over several jurisdiction and despite looking like an obvious case to you, would be very hard to prove.

If anyone has the capability of investigating and initiating criminal charges, it would be your local prosecutors office (for the alleged kidnapping) and likely the prosecutor[s office in Utah where the theft took place.
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GO after this trifling so called sibling with everything you can. This is about your father being mistreated by his own child. This useless, pathetic waste of human flesh is going to get his. I am going through a similar experience with some of my sorry siblings and useless relatives. He needs to be held accountable.
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I am sorry about you losing your father, however, there is an old saying which goes, "Do not chase after bad money". Nothing you can do will bring your father back, and the brother whose treatment of your father probably was not the best, at some point in time you will have to let all this anger go. You will make yourself sick and who will that serve? Forgive that brother, and hope God has some plans for him because what goes around, comes around.
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I would go to a higher authority than local police. Try state police and FBI. Kidnapping is a serious crime even if related.
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"Grannynapping" and elder abuse are serious problems. Adult Protective Services and law enforcement tend to be undertrained and overburdened. Very, very few counties have an assistant district attorney devoted to these areas or the money to prosecute them.

Elder lawyers DO deal with elder abuse, including suing caregivers (your estranged brother?) and nursing homes but litigation of any sort is very, very expensive.

You do not note whether your estranged brother was appointed agent under a Medical or Durable [Financial] Power of Attorney. If he was, he may have had legal authority to take some of the actions you mentioned.

Now that your father is gone, his Will must be submitted to a court for probate. If (1) you have evidence that it was altered while he suffered from dementia (undue influence is almost impossible to prove) and (2) know that you would net enough after the cost of the suit and any reimbursement due Medicaid (lMedicaid Estate Recovery Program laws vary from state to state) and (3) have the money, you can consider suing. An initial retainer of $5-10,000 is just that: you should expect to pay more as costs mount or see the court release the lawyer from the obligation to continue representing you.

It might be worthwhile to organize the facts and ask a few attorneys to each spend an hour or so evaluating the situation with you before going forward -- if you do.
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New Laws . Changes made after Jan 1 2017
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Is Medicaid involved? I do not see that is the case. If they are they will recover any government money spent on Dad's medical expenses.
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Call the probate court to see if they have a free consultation with volunteer attorneys. Courts hate to get involved in family dysfunction and drama. Been there, done that and I was the one that provided the care. It gets very vindictive and expensive very quickly. I would not be surprised if the 5-10 k is just the retainer, costs will go up, way up, from there.

Is it worth it? Not just the financial cost, but your wellbeing and peace of mind. Your dad must have been well cared for or authorities would have removed him. Dad may have even told authorities that he wanted to be with your brother. Did the brother have Dad's POA's? Dad needed the knee surgery or the doc would not have performed it and insurance would not have paid it.
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Oh did you know nursing homes will go after your father's estate? Just because they seize all of your dad's assets it does not stop there. Medicaid has an estate recovery law mandated by Federal government that all States must attempt to recover additional costs--such as transportation to go to doctor appointments and other nice things you will never know about until the person passes. Everything goes into probate including the house (IF it's just in your father's name) and Medicaid will get what is owed them that way. The house will have to be sold to pay for these unforeseen expenses.
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Other than wanting your father's assets, were you involved with his care in any way? If he were in a nursing home, the nursing got all of your dad's monies because one is not allowed to have any more than $2,000 tops in bank to be on Medicaid. It's amazing how family shows their true colors when it comes to money.
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