Follow
Share

My mother has two sisters who she had strained relations with her whole life. Due to this and a general lack of interest ( neither sister wanted kids) we had very very little interaction with either sister our whole lives. Fast forward 35 years, my mother has been dead a decade and both of her sister's are experiencing dementia and health issues. I have financial POAs for both and my sister and I share the health care POAs. One Aunt is appreciative and happy with anything you can do for her. We have caregivers coming in for short shifts everyday and her matters are straight forward though still time consuming ( she is recently widowed so I am cleaning up her husband's affairs and arranged for his end of life care). Her sister is the issue. She has dementia and is almost blind. She cannot keep her eye drops straight but refuses any help. I mean any help, no caregivers to the home, no assist from our excellent center for the sight impaired, no books on tape, nothing. She has already completely lost the vision in one eye after she just stopped taking her drops out of the blue after taking them for a decade. After her second surgery in 4 months I insisted she go to convalescent home to get her meds administered until they were simplified and to get some respite from care. After my sister and stayed with her for 2 days, she took a taxi home and now refuses to let me in the house. I can see every eye drop she has ever been prescribed lined up on her table. I spent another whole day trying to see what I could legally do to get her back into care and my only choice seems to be go to court and get guardianship. By the time that takes place she will have probably lost vision in the remaining eye due to non compliance but I feel like I did all I could. I was on the phone all day trying to make something happened.
But now I don't want guardianship. I don't want to have anything more to do with this aunt. She is abusive and I have no familial affection. I have tried to do the right thing by her just out of basic humanity but I find it is taking a huge toll on my life. I have recently moved to this area and between the two aunts, I have had no time or energy to make way for myself either socially or professionally. I want out and my only hesitation is that my sister is counting on my aunt's good will to stay in her will. As much as I would like an inheritance, I don't need it like my sister does who struggles financially. My sister is fed up as well and I don't want to just dump on her. I don't mind staying the financial power of attorney because that is in my wheelhouse and I have done that for 4 relatives so it is pretty easy for me. But this whole caregiving , health care role is hard for me. If it were a parent I would have some love and memories to help me through the dark days but as I see weeks and weeks of my life lost on this person I don't know why, I still have a living father who is having his own health issues and I anticipate it will only be a matter of time before he needs some help.

Has anyone had experience turning over matters to the state? What is the downside that I am not seeing? I have seen two elder attorneys who weren't very helpful about my options. Should I go to another attorney or just resign my health POA and let things fall where they may?

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
Find Care & Housing
Forget the inheritence, that is nothing but blood money. Let her assets be used for her care in a facility until she can qualify for medicare. Do not under any circumstance take guardianship for your aunt. Guardianship for the elderly can become a legal and financial nightmare! Fidiary laws do not apply to nieces. Call a social worker for the elderly and let them take over the responsibilities.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

You can walk away. Let someone else do it. Take care of your own health.
I have no next of kin. I'd rather have the state any day than anyone I'm related to.
You are a treasure and don't be used.
You might end up caring for your sister if she get sick.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report


Are you seeing an attorney specializing in Elder Care? Does your Aunt have enough money to last the rest of her life, without applying for Medicaid if she needs a care center?
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

I have been looking though the forum. Is there a thread that discusses these care contracts? I keep finding links to state agencies which is not necessary in her case.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

My attorney was really negative about us paying ourselves which I never really understood since they are real services that she would have to pay someone else for. I am going to look into that option right away and at least see if I can get my sister some compensation to put up with the abuse. It is really great to have another perspective on this whole thing. I don't feel like I am drowning anymore.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

Another thought: Why put off compensation until after Aunt's death? There may or may not be any money at that time. Draw up a personal care agreement to get paid monthly (your sister, that is). Spell out what Sis is doing and what Aunt is paying for these services. This, of course, assumes that Sis is allowed to do things. If she isn't allowed in the house, that pretty much limits what can be done, doesn't it?

Then when Aunt brings up her will Sis can say, "That is fine, Aunt. It is your money and you can do with it as you please."
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

Oh, and niceniece, I am so glad their is a nicesister that is going to help. :)
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

My thoughts on this are pretty much the same as Jeanne wrote. One other thing came to mind, because your bad aunt's actions put her at risk. I would talk to someone at Adult Protective Services to let them know what is going on. Self-neglect is a problem for many older people, so they may know what to do to try to help her keep her vision for longer. If she will not let you in her home, there is nothing else that you can personally do.
Helpful Answer (3)
Report

Just FYI, you can resign from the POA, but you cannot make your sister POA -- only your Aunt can do that. I assume she will (who else would she appoint?) but that has to be done formally, not just by agreement between you and your sister.

Good luck!
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

Thanks for saying what I have been thinking. I have seen her will and we are the heirs and the inheritance has only become an issue because my Aunt had used it as a club/carrot to get my sister's help over the years. (And so we don't look like money grubbers we don't stand to inherit anything from the other Aunt but we are both willing to do whatever we can for her) Trust me, she would never ever leave her money to charity, I don't think she has ever donated to a charitable cause in her life. And I agree that she will most likely use up every penny through the end of her life. I informed my sister this afternoon that I had to back out and she agreed to take over as the POA but on her terms. No more missed work for appointments or running around trying to save my Aunt from herself. My sister is better able to compartmentalize these things while I fret and stew. The medical and legal profession sure lets you down in these cases. I appreciate the time you took to respond. I don't think my poor husband could hear one more word about the situation.
Helpful Answer (6)
Report

You are indeed a nice niece!

If your difficult aunt has assets she should be using them to take care of herself, not saving them to dispose of in her will. It sounds like she would be a good candidate for a lovely assisted living facility, and that it would be good to do that sooner rather than later so that she becomes familiar with her surrounding before she loses all vision, and also, of course, to preserve her remaining vision as long as possible.

That is what makes sense. But neither financial or medical POA gives you the authority to determine where she lives against her will, unless she is declared by a court to be incompetent. Sigh.

There is no familial affection here, on either side. There is no reason why Aunt should expect you to take care of her. There is no reason why you and Sister should expect an inheritance from Aunt.

A person with dementia almost always reaches a point where she cannot live alone. And a blind person with dementia is probably going to reach that point even sooner. Getting in-home care or living in assisted living or memory care facilities is expensive. She is going to run through much and maybe all of her assets. There may be nothing to leave to anyone.

Have you seen her will? Are you sure that you and your sister will inherit? She could be leaving her assets to her college or to public radio or to a retirement home for race horses. Doing caregiving (or any other service) in the expectation that there will be money to leave and that it will be left to you is a pretty risky business.

Personally, I think that you both should get out of this stressful situation. It is good of you to be concerned about your sister, but you need to make a decision for yourself, and then your sister can decide what she wants to do. At least this is my take on situation.
Helpful Answer (8)
Report

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