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She was diagnosed w/pancreatic cancer/terminal. My mom doesn't want to discuss any financial questions or funeral. Hospice has been great but she does discuss her condition. She talks a lot about everything except how I should handle her financial affairs ugh

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somewhere there?? I think I'm losing it. "Someone there" makes more sense. :D
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Maybe it will help to have someone outside the family talk to her about her will and advance directives. These are services that most hospice services I've heard about provide. Talk to them about getting somewhere there to do them.

About the bills and funeral arrangements -- If you have durable POA, then you can arrange for these needs. Your mother has pancreatic cancer, which means she may be here for a while or be gone soon. There are needs that are not going to go away. Besides... if she lives a lot longer, she will still need funeral services one day. Just let the rest of the family know what you're doing, then go ahead and use the power that is given to you to act as her agent. Many people feel that if they don't plan for death, then it won't happen. They feel that planning for it is like inviting it in. This is faulty thinking that I believe we can all understand. Still, she needs her will, advance directives, and funeral arrangements. It is better to get arrangements made now than when she needs them.
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She doesn't have a will? Yikes. How severe would you say her cognitive impairment is? If it's not too far gone, what you could do is ask her attorney to draft as simple a will as possible and then, provided you are confident and the attorney is satisfied that she understands what she is doing, all she need do is read it through or have it read to her and sign it. But dying intestate is in itself a big headache for those left to deal with everything. Just be careful: don't coerce, don't do anything complicated, just cover the basics such as burial or cremation, choice of executor, principle beneficiaries including any charities she's habitually supported.

That is of course a separate issue from your DPOA responsibilities. Since she declines to instruct you, you should proceed according to your best judgement of what she would have done if she were still in control of matters, while also ensuring that any decisions you make are taken in her best interest.

Do not pay her bills using your own money. Keep good records, and if anyone then accuses you of stealing you have the documentary proof that you are doing no such thing. Check 123 paid for groceries delivered to Mrs X. Check 456 paid for the telephone service to Mrs X's address.

If your mother won't allow you to keep her check book, or you haven't presented your DPOA to her bank and had it accepted by them, then here's another suggestion: with my great aunt, for whom my mother had POA (but didn't do anything!) but I didn't (and did!), I used to write the checks out, present them with their respective invoices to Aunt L, and ask her to sign them. I sometimes wished she *would* question me more closely about the invoices, as it was she'd happily just have taken my word for it; but in any case that worked fine for her LTC invoices, optician, PT and so on. If you're paying for groceries, keep receipts, create a summary and ask her to refund you. But don't end up out of pocket: when you think about it, that's dishonest in a different way, because you're pretending and it's patronising. Does your mother suddenly think food is free?

With the car, it sounds as if your mother has in mind a kind of "permanent loan" to your daughter: so that if God does restore her to health and she is able to drive again, your daughter would give the car back with good grace. That's fair enough, a kind of halfway house that allows your mother not to face up to a permanent loss. Just make sure your daughter sees it the same way! Did your mother formally transfer ownership to her, or just toss her the keys and say "here you go"?
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Well she doesn't have a will and my concern is her cognitive/memory issues. She recently gave my daughter her car and doesn't remember giving it to her. I'm paying for all bills because I don't want to be accused of stealing I'm her only child but she doesn't want to address anything she told me to deal with things when she is gone but I tell her that her affairs she be in order in case something happened to me and thus her two young grandchildren would not have to deal with anything. She tells me God might restore her and she becomes able to drive again. This is so sad as she can't walk and has serious osteoporosis and wheel chair bound but but but ugh
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When your mom dies your POA becomes invalid. I would suggest you do all you can now using your POA to get finances in shape. Hopefully you are also executor of her will. This is needed to handle things after her death.

This can be a tricky area with poa of someone who is still legally competent but not competent in a practical sense. You may want to contact the attorney who drafted the document for advice.

I have POA for my folks, Dad has dementia, is not legally incompetent but can't deal with bills etc. and had made a big mess of the finances. I've been handling finances for a couple of years now. He thinks mom does it. Legal? I'm not really sure but it's the only way to get things done at this point. I don't ask or tell him anything, he would never agree to spend a dime, so I have to do what has to be done.
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If your mom refuses to discuss her affairs as POA you can go ahead and act on her behalf. I work in hospice and I've seen family members plan funerals and make arrangements with the funeral home while the parent is still alive, lucid, and without the parent's input.

I know it's a huge responsibility to tackle on top of caring for your mom but if your mom granted you POA she must think you're very capable of handling her affairs.
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