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My stepmother, 82, has dementia. Her daughter (mystepsister) has power of attorney. POA has numerous unpaid bills for which she is responsible, in the tens of thousands of dollars. I live in a different state than they. I suspect that my stepmother is being financially exploited by her daughter and see a need to step in, but do not know what to do or how to proceed. I have limited income and cannot afford expensive legal assistance. What else can I do to ensure that my stepmother is not financially exploited?

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I take it he was executor as well. (POA actually ends at death.) If there was a Will and he did not follow it there might be some recourse also.
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Heartbroken, so sorry to hear about your mother's death and her POA's exploitation of the situation both before and after her death. It sounds so familiar to me, I almost thought it was my sister-in-law writing about my husband's mother's death. In their case, their controlling brother was sole beneficiary, so he did pretty much everything you described, but it was his mother's wishes he was carrying out. He threw away boxes of family photos, took her new car, etc. My sister-in-law had to dumpster dive in the rented trash bin (while the house was being worked on to put on the market), and retrieve what she could. She found photos that we had never seen before, and is sorting and sending them out to us and her two other siblings. She also found newspaper articles from when my husband played football in high school that his mother had saved. In your case, it sounds like your mother intended you to have the funds in the account the POA (your brother?) siphoned off into his own account. You could consult an elder law attorney and see if you have any recourse. But from what I understand, the POA has total control over financial matters both before and after death of the elder person. Your mother essentially gave him the power to act as if she herself were making the decisions. Not sure if anything can be done, but it's worth a try to run it by a lawyer and see what he/she thinks. Best of luck to you - seems a lot of us are in the same boat.
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What type of attorney do you see if you KNOW through financial records $ has been stolen/transferred to a POAs account? I was a beneficiary on one of my mother's accounts, but the POA transferred over $180,000 from it in less than 6 months (and almost $85,000 less than 2 weeks before her death) - not to mention all the money he transferred withing the last 4 years. Please note, he put my mother in a "hell hole of an assisted living facility" to basically die - which she did do! This makes me sick. And to top everything off, he has her ashes & won't bury her...just found that out today! Do I even have a chance at recovering any of this money? I want to do this solely out of principle. No one should be allowed to get away with this. He has even sold ALL of her personal belongings, including an expensive vehicle and has pocketed that as well. Doesn't he have to have some accountability for all the wrongs committed. And I hate to mention it, but he was also trying to get his hands on medication to kill her a few weeks before she died. He is a sicko!!!!!...always has been & always will be.
Do you think I even stand a chance on doing something? DCF and Adult Protective Services are USELESS. The sheriff's department has been no help either. Why is this so rampant? What is wrong with our system for protecting the elderly.
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No one in a position of real authority ("no one") cares about the financial abuse of ordinary people.

No one cares when the Prince of Nigeria gets money.

No one cares when someone scams the deed to a house.

No one cares when someone gets an elder loved one to pay fake debts.

No one cares when older people lose their money to telemarketing scams.

No one cares when older people end up in the poor house because of fake investment schemes.

No one cares when older people get ripped off by fake sweepstakes and lottery scams.

There are hotlines and websites that purport to care but I have yet to encounter a single person who had any success recouping any money.

The only people who get back any money are the wealthy who get scammed by someone like Bernie Madoff. He had hundreds of victims. But when you're just another ordinary person, no one cares.

If you had the resources to fight the daughter I would suggest taking her to court. But you don't so, sadly, my suggestion to you is let it go.
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My Aunt is being taken advantage of financially by my half-sister and her son (that is a whole different story).
How can I report this without them knowing it was me? My half-sister hates all of us and will retaliate in ways you have no idea about. Help!!
Oh yes... my Aunt has been diagnosed with dementia.
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APS is always going to do two things that we may find frustrating. They will focus on the physical well-being and safety of the person needing care, and financial exploitation they will tend to leave to law enforcement and guardianship/conservatorship proceedings. They will also give the benefit of ANY doubt in competence to the person, as they cannot legally override the autonomy of a legally competent adult and will not try to. I would stop short of calling them "a joke" because they have a very hard job and not enough staff to do everything that needs done, and have to cope with decisions from judges who may not understand or agree with their point of view...more often than not they do protect vulnerable people from real abuse, and may even help a family function better if they get any cooperation at all.
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caregivertwo...your brother sounds so much like my sister. She did exactly the same type of thing by getting her name on my mom's checking account after our dad died. She then wanted me to sign up to be the limited agent on my mom's investment account at a brokerage firm. So I did, but soon noticed the bank account linked to the brokerage account was their joint account. I smelled a rat and removed myself as limited agent. My feeling was that my sister wanted me to be duped into helping her funnel my mom's brokerage funds held in a Trust, about $600k at the time, into their joint account, making that money my mom's and my sister's. That way my sister could claim innocence if charged with anything illegal, claiming that I was the one that did the transfers. But a smarter move on my part would have been to remain the limited agent, but insist that the account linked to the brokerage account be an account solely owned by my mom without my sister's name on it. That way, I would still have access to the account to monitor it. So when that ploy of my sister's didn't work, her next move was to coerce my mom into dissolving the Trust that my dad had set up, close the brokerage account and have all the funds transferred to a bank account (not sure if their joint account or not). My brother and I voiced strong opposition to my sister having her name on our mom's bank account, but my sister defended it by telling our mom that if she died, someone would need access to her money to pay for funeral expenses. She uses fear as a way to manipulate our mom into doing whatever she wants, and it works.

You are so right about family crime like this being ignored by law enforcement. I would get APS involved, but our mother is my sister's enabler and would defend her no matter what she does, so I feel it's futile to even try to correct the situation. It would cause our mother a lot of trauma and in the end I would be blamed for it all. So I sit back and let it all play out. I think at the age of 87 she has enough money to see her through the remaining years of her life, and as for me and my 2 brothers, we may very well get the short end of the stick when it comes to inheritance. It has been a hard thing to accept but I feel like my hands are tied. My parents put by far the most dishonest, parasitic and controlling sibling in charge of everything.
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My brother who had POA for my mom and a joint bank account for years used the joint account to divert large sums of money from my mother's financial accounts to him. He would deposit draws from her financial accounts into the joint banking account and then transfer most of the funds to his personal account, leaving my mother with only a pittance to live on. He also transferred Social Security payments made to the joint account to himself. He took advantage of her childhood poverty to make her think she was poor again- under hushed breath she explained to me several times that she had "financial problems" even though she was rich! I didn't hear the warning signs.....
My brother(s) (both were addicted to the money) stole several hundred thousand dollars from her, the theft continued even to the point of denying her money for her nursing care (they needed their early "inheritance" more, she was going to die anyways) It took me a long time before I finally caught on.
My mom's story is a warning to all to be vigilant! Don't look the other way or think that signs or your gut intuition of financial abuse shouldn't be investigated today! Family "white-collar crime" like this is 99% ignored by law enforcement, usually you are left paying exhorbitant legal bills for a civil case but the perpetrator has already spent the money so there is nothing left to recover. Because I delayed, my mom risks facing running out of money for her care in her final days.
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My brother who had POA for my mom and a joint bank account for years used the joint account to divert large sums of money from my mother's financial accounts to him. He would deposit draws from her financial accounts into the joint banking account and then transfer most of the funds to his personal account, leaving my mother with only a pittance to live on. He also transferred Social Security payments made to the joint account to himself. He took advantage of her childhood poverty to make her think she was poor again- under hushed breath she explained to me several times that she had "financial problems" even though she was rich! I didn't hear the warning signs.....
My brother(s) (both were addicted to the money) stole several hundred thousand dollars from her, the theft continued even to the point of denying her money for her nursing care (they needed their early "inheritance" more, she was going to die anyways) It took me a long time before I finally caught on.
My mom's story is a warning to all to be vigilant! Don't look the other way or think that signs or your gut intuition of financial abuse shouldn't be investigated today! Family "white-collar crime" like this is 99% ignored by law enforcement, usually you are left paying exhorbitant legal bills for a civil case but the perpetrator has already spent the money so there is nothing left to recover. Because I delayed, my mom risks facing running out of money for her care in her final days.
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Can a nursing home discus selling my mothers house with her after I told them we are not going to at this time without me as an only child being around?
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P.S. People on this sight have been very kind and it is nice to know that you are not the only one in these very horrible, unfortunate situations.
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I wish you nothing but the best in getting help with a POA. My mom is 91 years old and the POAs (unfortunately related) are exploiting my mom in more ways than I can count. DCF has been no help to me at all. The ombudsman has been no help - much less a return phone call to me. The sheriff's department will not do anything. I cannot afford an attorney either and I do not qualify for any free legal aid. I totally feel for you and I hope you have better luck than I have had. I have used every resource I know of, and nothing has helped me.
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Sometimes, even when it is family, you have to involve police. I am facing this right now with my daughter who has either abused or permitted abuse of my credit cards to an extensive degree, and hopefully can just put a stop to it and suck it up financially, but if one of her current room-mates ends up in trouble over it, I'm sorry but limits have to be set.
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After my father had a brain hemorrhage resulting in memory loss, my sister "conveniently" took him to change his will at the same time she had an elderly attorney apply for medicaid for my mother who had dementia & at the time, needed to be placed in a nursing home. I found out through my father when he accidentally "slipped" & told me about the change when he was talking about my sister & brother in law taking him to get the will change & added my brother in laws name but didn't know why. Now my father won't speak to me about it & my sister will not disclose any info. In fact, she had the attorney send me a letter telling me basically it is not my right to know about my father's will & testament. She won't speak to me now. I believe she is going to sue the nursing home where my mother was residing because my mother died from complications as a result of neglect. I have been left in the dark & now have no recourse to obtain any info & believe she has "threatened" my father in some way to withhold info from me. I have written a letter to this elderly attorney & asked her to see my father but have not heard any outcome as well.
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Muso, as POA your step-sister is legally obligated to operate in the best interest of your stepmother. So if her bills are piling up and not being paid, you would need to petition the courts to have her investigated and/or removed as POA. Not sure how that all works, but hopefully someone can help you - not sure how you can change the course of things without getting an attorney involved, which as we know gets expensive. Other than that, I think you're kind of SOL when it comes to correcting the problem. Sometimes mothers put their trust in the wrong hands, and it appears that is the case with yours (and mine too). Sad for you to have to witness without being able to help put a stop to the exploitation, but sometimes our mothers make imprudent choices and inevitably have to suffer the consequences of them. From what I have read about APS if an elderly person is not in immediate physical danger they pretty much let everything else slide. So the result of getting them involved might be to squeeze you out of her life altogether. So you're kind of between a rock and a hard place. Best of luck whatever approach you take.
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Sillyme, you are really in the thick of it with your father and his golddiggers, and the caretaker sworn to keep his secrets! It's like a runaway train! Wow, all I can say is what a horrible situation for you and your siblings to find yourselves in! You will need to act FAST to stop the latest golddigger in her tracks. You need to get control of his finances pronto and from what you describe, probably need to have him declared incompetent to keep him from doing something crazy. I thought I had it bad with my sociopath sister golddigging my mom, but a suitor of the opposite sex would be even more difficult to get a grip on and do damage control. I think if a sibling already has POA for him and you have him declared incompetent, then that will possibly end the problem, financially anyway. Best of luck to you in getting the situation under control. I really feel for you!
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Beware of elderly couples getting married. Even with prenupt. Criminals come in all ages. I know this first hand. Missing $400,000. and physical and mental abuse of my father. 100 percent disabled vet.
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Our experience with APS was similar. All they did was "warn" the gold digger woman and her daughters who were scamming my dad. They told him "someone" reported him. He was angry but since reporting is anonymous, we had deniability. After a year and a half and wasted thousands of dollars, the woman and her daughters finally showed their true crazy colors so much, that even my dad got scared and ended the relationship. NO help was ever really given by APS, even when they forced their way past the caregiver into my dad's home and tried to convince him to marry the woman and I called them while it was in progress! Good thing my sister in law was there. APS did, FINALLY, after that, call them again and said "they were being watched". Big whoop. Maybe it scared them off, but none of the money was ever paid back, and we were all too exhausted to press charges. My dad never admitted to being scammed, just fooled by a woman who was really too jealous and needy and pushy. So he would never have been on board with bringing charges. He thinks he was just ending a bad relationship and wrote a nice breakup letter. To much crap to write here. APS basically provided nothing but a little scare.

Now my 85 yr. old dad, in even worse physical and mental condition, is chasing an even younger woman, who is gladly taking all the money and gifts he showers on her, while ignoring his own children, who have spent countless hours and our own money to make sure he is safe and cared for. Now, he doesn't even bother with us knowing who he is "dating" but lies about everything, to her and to us. (to her about his true medical condition and mental state. He can be very charming and his long term memory is still good. Short term, terrible. Forgets his medication, etc.) The only reason we even know about this woman is because the caregiver has told us, even though my dad "swears" her to secrecy. She knows she can't withhold info, so she calls or texts one of us. I live out of state, so I'm not usually first to get any info...

My oldest sibling has POA and Medical POA. We know if dad doesn't stop the reckless spending (hundreds each week) he won't be able to live in the senior community to which we just moved him. Nice but expensive, and he can barely afford it on a strict budget, which he is not sticking to! So my oldest sibling is going to have "a word" with the gold digger. If she doesn't relent or if she complains to my dad, things will only get worse. We're thinking we need to start the process of guardianship, but don't know what to do in the interim, especially if dad gets upset with us trying to "cramp his style", or if the gold digger doubles down and tries to get control over his finances.

Just venting I guess, I looking for suggestions as to how to handle this, AGAIN. So sick of my dad allowing these types of women into his life! But just to cover his bases, he's still chasing little old ladies and another really nice older woman/girlfriend, while still chasing the younger woman who is young enough to be his daughter!

Anybody been in this type of situation before? Elder parent with dementia who can fool some doctors, but doesn't remember to take his meds, is falling down and has other medical issues, but still thinks he's the "man about town" or "big man on campus"?
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Adult Protective Services is a joke. I contacted them about a man who's family was robbing him blind and was told to stay out of it. Don't call APS. They are a waste of time.
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You can certainly report it, but I believe you're in an uphill fight. Call the local police (in stepmom's town) and ask for the number to report suspected elder exploitation or abuse. Call whatever number they give you and explain the situation. If you suspect your stepmom is being neglected, include that information as well. They should (should) open a case file if to do nothing more than go visit her.

In the end, there's really not much you can do. My recommendation would be to stay out of it after you've reported it to authorities.
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My experience with Los Angeles County Department of Aging, was the umbrella for other sub-departments such as Elder Abuse. I live with my mom and was shocked to see she had been sending her money out to all of these political agencies who I've since learned, prey on the elderly and line their pockets with the money they receive for their bleeding heart story (mostly those who want to impeach the president). I called the Dept on Aging to report this (after trying to get mom's name and address off their mailing list) and they sent someone out but didn't really do anything about the flood of mail we were getting. What they did do however, was to proclaim the house was unsafe, that she had Alzheimer's and needed 24/7 care. Using these "observations", they were gathering up "evidence" to have mother moved to a nursing home, obtain POA and Converservatorship of her assets, claim our home and sell it to pay for her nursing care. I had to find an Elder Law attorney and make all kinds of safety precautions and alarms and find help in addition to getting her checkbook, driving privilege and car away from her. Anyhow, just be careful when you ask for these Public Services. They're really out for their own preservation and may not respond in the manner you think best.
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DCF (Department of Children & Families) here in the state of Florida was also a joke in our case. We have blatant fraud going on which is perpetrated by my mother's live-in deadbeat boyfriend and absolutely nothing was done/or found by DCF in their ruling against him and his actions. My mother also protected her boyfriend by answering the questions "correctly" that she gives consent for him to use her credit cards to do incidental shopping for her. But she doesn't realize he then takes monumental amounts out incrementally when he goes on these shopping sprees.
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APS told me,"What the hell do you want us to do. Call the police."
Yeah, right.
APS should be abolished.
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Just wondering what as happened to make you suspect?
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No, they cannot (or will not) handle this situation. You must make a "Financial Inquiry" with the State Attorney's office on the victim's behalf. Note: you do Not have to have a POA, in order to report this ~ I hope you can stop this abuse,before it's too late. You can also file with the court, to have the POA revoked (If the abuser currently has a POA) . I hope this helps.
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Just found out APS will only investigate 1 year for Elder Financial Abuse and cannot subpoena records. If you have good proof, you can go to your State's Attorney to see if they might take your case.
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Can APS subpoena bank records, investments, etc. in investigating an Elder Financial Abuse case?
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APS, does not have the capability of truly looking into their finances. I thought that they did and reported financial abuse for my father. The APS caseworker said that nothing was wrong and reported the case closed. The debt has risen another $10,000 since (only a few months). Luckily, I was able to obtain POA of my father and am gathering proof against his "girlfriend". As far as I am concerned, APS was a joke.
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Please contact your local (city and state specific) "Area on Aging and Disability" office. Most of the main cities have these offices--like Huntsville, Al., Birmingham, Al., Fayetteville, TN, etc.
I was the daughter left to "pick up the pieces". And I kick myself b/c I could have prevented it if I had not continued to let my mother and sister bully me. Now, I am just as "blown away" as the rest of the family.
But, please, please, please contact this organization-all services are free--before your situation proceeds. good luck to you.
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is there any way to get poa because neglect from my uncle is pervideing care for my grandparents
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