Follow
Share

Howdy all. My Mom passed away on Easter. I was her POA for finances and medical care, and I'm now her successor executor with Sister 1 being the executor. Some of you may remember my two sisters are narcissistic. S1's having a rough time with Mom's passing. I get that, but she refuses to face the paperwork involved, but she had the energy to get with Mom's lawyer and go nuts about my handling of Mom's finances, even getting Sister 2 involved, and spun up all to the point they accused me of mishandling Mom's finances. After all my work in the past years to arrange Mom's finances and her house so we would't have to go through probate, Mom's lawyer said he'd file for probate and force an accounting. At one point I worried sick whether I needed a lawyer and worried I'd be arrested. Neither sister talked with me about anything other than to be nasty to me.

Finally, Sister 2 arrived one morning with a list of questionable transfers the lawyer wanted me to explain and show receipts. I answered every question, pulling up the monthly statement that I've always compiled, and why it happened. I showed her my notes. They questioned the amounts that I transferred reimbursing myself for Mom's expenses (I can't afford to pay her expenses, only my own). She tried to argue that I should have separated all expenses. I said, "That's stupid. We drink the same milk, use the same roll of toilet paper, and eat the same meals."

I showed S2 all the receipts, notes and how I accounted for Mom's and my expenses--a tedious but easy system. The amounts matched what I transferred every month, and she understood it all. Finally, she said she had no more questions and called S1 immediately that she was satisfied with all my answers and the receipts, that I wasn't nervous at her questioning (I hid it great apparently), and that she believes my accounting of Mom's money was satisfactory. S1 was like "Okay, I'll notify Lawyer."

I can't stand it. They put me through another hell immediately after Mom's death, never having included me in any talks about Mom's finances, and didn't even apologize or anything for accusing me after working so hard to Mom's benefit.

Now, S1 constantly exclaims that she can't handle Mom's checking account, the life insurance claim, other finances, and has done nothing about dealing with Mom's estate--except getting the lawyer spun up and then when I offered to write the check for a pharmacy bill we got for Mom, she said she didn't know how much was left in Mom's checking account. I exclaimed, "There's eight thousand dollars in there!" She admitted being told to remove a lot and she doesn't even know how much she took out! She doesn't know anything and just flails her arms.

At that point, I am refusing to touch anything to do with Mom's finances, even the checking account, and I'm on the account. I refused her tonight when she pushed me to write the checks. I will not write a check or do anything with the finances after being dragged into hell for no reason. After Mom died, I had asked her if she wanted me to take over as executor. (Before Mom died S1 was happy to agree to my being executor as S1 said she couldn't do it.)

Now I'm concerned about what's happened with Mom's finances and whether she will properly take care of Mom's estate. The bills are still sitting here. I don't want the responsibility of being executor at this point. I do NOT want to put myself out there for Sisters' abuse anymore.

Do any of you have any suggestions? I go back home at the end of this month. We have a buyer for Mom's house. I can't wait to go home, but I do feel a desire to make sure Mom's estate is properly taken to its end. Right now I'm scared that will not happen.

UPDATE: In the two months I've been home (what a rush of relief when I crossed out of that state!), I've been under a doctor's care for extreme exhaustion and PTSD. I'm on antidepressants for another month. I'm doing much better! I hadn't heard from Sister 1 and Sister 2 until a bit over a week ago. They caught me blindsided like they always do.

They'd analyzed my monthly financial statements to Mom and concluded I wasn't entitled to reimbursements for much of the car expenses. They plan to "dock" me and lower my inheritance about $7,000 because of it. As S2 went through the list, she repeated numerous times "This'll cost yah." As with everything those two throw at me, I was stunned. Sister 2 said she'd send me a spreadsheet of what they said I'm not entitled to. It's been over a week and I still haven't received it.

I had vacillated between just accepting whatever money I'm sent and never have to speak to them again (because I'm still worn out of it all and I had decided last year I'm never speaking to them again as they're no loss to me) or fighting. I chose the latter. I've had it with my sisters' narcissism and abuse.

Last week I left a message with Mom's lawyer that I have concerns over the handling of the estate. I will tell him I want to go through probate and get a post-death accounting of Mom's finances.

The lawyer hasn't returned my call yet but my view is I have serious concerns from Sister 1's (the executor) handling of the finances since Mom's death, and I do not believe S1 and S2 can retroactively refute what I did since I believe they're all reasonable.

Plus, I will tell the Lawyer I want S1 and S2 to explain to the judge how is it they were paid monthly for any care or expenses they may have incurred on Mom's behalf--yet I was never paid. I want them to tell the judge why they were reimbursed 100% for any expenses they chose to incur, such as buying Mom clothes she didn't need or yard improvements that weren't necessary, yet they deny my reimbursements for about half the car expenses--the car I wouldn't have had in the first place had I stayed home.

I'll accept a judge's decision--if the judge agrees with S1 and S2, I'll apologize and make it right--but I will not accept S1 and S2's decision as this smacks of being personal and them padding their own wallets at my expense, which is illegal. Whichever way it goes, I'll be happy to have been given a fair review.

ROVANA: Thank you for your earlier post about probate can be a good thing. I've thought so often of it. You're a main reason why I'm pushing for probate--let the truth prevail. 
Helpful Answer (9)
Reply to MountainMoose
Report

"..she said she didn't know how much was left in Mom's checking account. I exclaimed, "There's eight thousand dollars in there!" She admitted being told to remove a lot and she doesn't even know how much she took out! She doesn't know anything and just flails her arms. " This is pretty telling. I'm willing to bet sis has removed most or all of the money. Start making HER account for it. Sit her down and DEMAND she show proof of funds.
Helpful Answer (8)
Reply to XenaJada
Report

MountainMoose, I sympathize with what you've been going through with providing your your mother's care while your sisters cause problems. One particular thing you said that I think may be important is "At that point, I am refusing to touch anything to do with Mom's finances, even the checking account, and I'm on the account." Depending on exactly how you are listed "on the account," the funds in it may be legally yours and/or you may be the only person who can legally access those funds. I suggest contacting the bank to find out the status of that account. Your sister may have acted illegally when she withdrew funds from it and, if so, that might give you leverage to force her to quit being difficult.
Helpful Answer (8)
Reply to bicycler
Report

Good advice from above posters. But about avoiding probate - sometimes probate can be a great thing! Avoidance strategies can work IF all the family can work together and all can be trusted. But , if not, then a legal referee process such as probate can save a lot of grief. There is an accountability process there that can deter some funny business and outright fraud. In too many cases, probate costs are indeed dollars well spent.
And transparency is crucial. A lot of problems start because of lack of transparency, of not having information. Sometimes family members say they don't want to get involved and then later they question, when they should have paid attention in the first place. But sometimes family members don't get involved because they know the "golden child" is sacrosanct and it would be a waste of time and cause nothing but bad feeling if they did assert themselves.
Helpful Answer (8)
Reply to rovana
Report

Remind your sister there is this little thing called a BANK STATEMENT... it will show her withdrawals....LOL
Helpful Answer (8)
Reply to pamzimmrrt
Report

Moose, it has only been a couple of weeks since mom passed. It will take some time. Try to relax, go home and take care of yourself. I would not leave the box with your twisted sisters unless you have copies of everything. You may need it.
Helpful Answer (7)
Reply to gladimhere
Report

First, want to TU for the update. We always like to know how things worked out. This may help someone else.

So sorry that it worked out this way. Please, let it go. Maybe not today but soon. I would never talk to ur sisters again. You have a very good reason not to. Go on with ur life and make a family from friends. What goes around comes around. And it does! I have seen it. Someday they will come to you for something and please say no. They will probably go right thru their inheritance because they r greedy people. You owe them nothing. Just know, you were there for Mom. Something good is in ur future.
Helpful Answer (7)
Reply to JoAnn29
Report

I'm so sorry about your mom...

Yep, my thoughts exactly. Scan or photocopy everything and keep a file. Keep the originals handy in case they come asking for it. If I were you, I wouldn't write out any checks. You are Not the executer to do this. Don't do anything that would get them to accuse you of touching the money. You offered, you tried. They obviously don't trust you. So, back away...

If sister is telling the truth (is she? or is she bluffing?) that it's going through probate, you would have received a letter from the lawyer about it. We're going through this now with my father. We siblings received the letter from the lawyer which included the copy of the Will and the court date. We went to court. The judge called each one of us - one at a time - to identify ourselves, how we were related to the deceased and do we approve our brother (assigned by Dad's Will ) to be the Executer and of the Will.

Just be careful about signing anything as 'executor'. Your sister may be acting dramatic to 'woe is me', etc.. knowing if she draws it out, you will be going home soon. You know them better. Go with your guts. Decide if it's worth stressing over. You take care. {HUGS}
Helpful Answer (6)
Reply to bookluvr
Report

The question is, who told sister to remove money and for what purpose? She might have taken out money to make sure she could pay bills (if they froze the account on death) but she should be able to articulate that. It sounds like she's not wanting to pay bills, so I'm not sure what's going on. I agree with Xenajada - make her account for all of it.
Helpful Answer (6)
Reply to blannie
Report

Moose, your sisters sound like two of the biggest idiots out there. You're right; they're no loss.

Good for you for insisting on probate.
Helpful Answer (5)
Reply to BarbBrooklyn
Report

See All Answers