Follow
Share

I am now the full-time caregiver for my elderly mother. I am an only child, so it all falls to me. Although my mother can still stay at home by herself during the day, she no longer has the memory or strength to do the daily tasks around the house. I do everything from giving her her medication daily, doing her (and my) finances, taking care of the house, laundry, shopping, taking her to appointments, fixing meals, etc., etc., etc. I work full time; so that, along with taking care of my mom, fills up my days.


My problem is that several years ago, before my father passed away and I became Mom's caregiver, my aunt (my father's sister) designated me as the executor of her estate. Never mind that she never asked me if I'd be willing to do it (she did not) - she just appointed me because "I was single and had the time to do it." Ugh! So as not to hurt her feelings (and because I was a little bit chicken), I did not refuse. But now that I not only have a full-time job but another full-time job taking care of my mother, I would like to let my aunt know that she needs to find another executor. Does anyone have any thoughts on how I could do that without hurting her feelings too terribly? She is a single woman who never married so has no husband or children to do it. And all of her siblings are now gone. She chose me over her other nieces and nephew because I was the "single one." I don't want to lose touch with her because she' family, but I have a feeling that this might do that. Any thoughts or suggestions? Thanks so much in advance!

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
Find Care & Housing
dgillygal, my gosh, your plate is becoming full with taking care of your Mom. It is good that you are thinking ahead.

Does your Aunt have a back-up Executor? If not, it might be good to chat with your Aunt about this, as no one has a crystal ball to know how everyone will be 6 months from now. Your Aunt can have her Attorney be her back-up Executor, and when that time comes your Aunt passes, you can ask the Attorney to handle the estate if you feel you just cannot do it.

If your Aunt has a large estate and it is in a Trust, it should be easy to handle.  If it isn't in a Trust, then there is Probate Court.  My parent's never got everything put into their Trust, so majority had to go to Probate.  I was just so exhausted from helping my elderly parents, that I am paying from the estate to have their Elder Law Attorney handle the required Probate documents, of which there were many.   My parents had no back-up Executor, I was it, being an only child and my parents siblings had passed on years ago. 
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Thank you all for your suggestions! I appreciate the honesty. I guess I'm just being a bit selfish. My aunt's estate will not be large, and I have already met with her and know where her papers are. She was a legal secretary for many years, so she is organized! I do not think that she has an alternate executor, so that may be something I suggest to her. But overall, she has things well documented and finalized, so I guess I shouldn't have too much trouble when the time comes. My unease is probably just my fear of the unknown future ... how long my mother will live, how her dementia will progress, how much more responsibility I'll have since I don't have siblings to share the load ... stuff like that. My aunt is in reasonably good health, so I'm sure she'll be around for a long while.

Thanks again for all the responses! I really appreciate the input!
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

I agree with Countrymouse too.
Come back dgillygirl?
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

I agree with Country Mouse. And, having been involved in settling several estates, trust me it typically isn't that complicated. Having said that, it is best if you know where all of your aunt's paperwork is . It will simplify things later.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Aren't you rather crossing a bridge before you come to it? God willing, your aunt may live many years yet, no?

And in any case, although she may have told you that she chose you because you were the single one, I think you can read between the lines a bit. She's the single one, too. She never married or had children. Perhaps she held down a good job, as well. Are you sure she isn't paying you the compliment of knowing a kindred spirit when she sees one?

Unless her estate is terribly large or complicated the amount of work shouldn't be excessively burdensome, and you won't have to get it all done in five minutes. If you possibly can, I should honour her wishes and take a certain quiet pride in her confidence in you.
Helpful Answer (4)
Report

Is your aunt currently competent to change her will and assign a co-executor, an alternate executor?
Contact her attorney who drew up the will before talking with your aunt, ask the attorney if there is an alternate, ask what happens if you resign or decline now..under the reasonable request to update her will if all of her siblings have passed and were beneficiaries.

You might talk to your sibling qualified to be an alternate executor, then approach aunt with an acceptable plan in her best interests.

If you are also a beneficiary of her will, you might have an interest in being her executrix.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Your aunt has not passed yet? An executor's responsibilities begin at death.
There is no POA for current issues? POA responsibilities end at death.
Are you thinking there are caregiving responsibilities obligated or expected by your aunt?
Remember, if one has the responsibility to care for a loved one, they are not responsible for the hands-on caregiving, but are responsible for getting them care.
Hope this will help you sort out your responsibilities. I like that you are condidering your boundaries in advance.

As far as changing executor, can you be sure your aunt has an alternate added to her last wishes?
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.