I believe the time is nearing for a parent that may consider memory loss and be considered incompetent.

This parent lives alone and I'm concerned what happenes after this determination.

What happens next?


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Nothing happens in the sense that no one forces a person from their home, maybe the unusual case of APS really stepping in, but most of the time it becomes a family decision about what to do next. Hopefully someone has POA for medical and healthcare decisions because this is the time to use it.
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to Daughterof1930

Seems like if someone were mentally deficient or incapacitated and still living alone with a trust that states a succession of a successor trustee and they cannot move in with the parent and has no room for the parent there could be a problem with abandonment.

Right now the parent is struggling and gets groceries delivered and finances are monitored. We hope that the parent will allow us to get her into a care home or get her some in home assistance and companionship but we can't force the plans to happen.
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Reply to Gnarley
disgustedtoo Jun 27, 2021
It isn't clear what the trust has to do with how to deal with caring for your mother. Trusts are generally for assets, either monetary or real estate. If there are questions about the trust, it would be best to review it with the atty who set it up.

Hopefully, as others noted, POAs were set up along with the trust (and other legal documents, such as a will.) If not, depending on her remaining cognitive abilities, sometimes they are still capable of assigning POAs and making legal decisions. That would be up to the attorney. If there are no POAs in place, then guardianship/conservatorship would need to be applied for. Again, depending on the level of competence, you may get full or partial oversight. The court would decide how much or little is needed, to be reviewed as the condition progresses.

You are correct, on some level, that we can't force someone to move or accept care, even with dementia. I tried bringing in aides for my mother, initially just 1hr/day, to check on her, remind her to take her meds (locked timed dispenser - they can't administer, but they can check and point it out) and get used to having them. Plan was to increase time and duties as needed. This didn't last 2 months - she refused to let them in. We did have to make some legal changes (set up trust for liquid assets and Life Estate for the condo.) The attorney took her aside and queried her - he determined she was still capable of understanding and signing the legal documents. She was only in the early stages.

Plan B was to have her move, either to a MC facility or in with one of my brothers (their idea, which personally I felt was not going to work.) She refused to consider ANY kind of move, with AL being the worst option. This was despite her previous plans to move to AL when she felt the time was right. The atty told me we could not force her to move and suggested guardianship. I'm not sure her level of dementia would have been enough to get appointed, but that was moot. The time and expense was bad enough, but the place we had settled on would not accept a committal.

If the atty who set up the trust (and hopefully POAs) is still active, I would seek advice from him/her. If not, many EC attys offer a first consult (limited) for free. It would be best to have a legal expert review the documents and your questions. It doesn't make any sense that a trust would prevent someone from either moving in or moving her to your place (but you indicated no space for her.) To back up what the atty told me, staff at the MC mom lived in also told me they can't force anyone, dementia or not, to do what they are refusing (baths, medication, treatment, etc.) The alternative involves coaxing them or using fibs to get the desired result, whether that is simply bathing, taking meds or moving to a care facility.

In the end, fibs were used to get our mother moved. The facility said just get her there and they would take it from there. She managed to "bruise" her leg and develop cellulitis just before the move was planned. YB used this to make a fake letter from 'Elder Services' at the hospital where she was Dxed and given Rx/instructions for treating the wound. In it, "they" indicated she either move to a place we choose or they would place her. I did all the other work leading up to this and left the actual move to my brothers. She was madder than a wet hen, but reluctantly went with them.

Of course, as usually happens, there was a lot of pleading to go home, but eventually that stopped. She lived there for 4 years, and home became a previous place (25+ years previous) she had lived in.

Have the docs reviewed and present your questions to an EC atty. Meanwhile, be checking out various places, to compare and choose from. We used mom's trust funds to help offset the cost of the facility (over half.) This WAS allowed - although we are the trustees and beneficiaries, the funds were to be used for her benefit. The Life Estate was a bad idea, but that's another story.
A guardian is appointed by the court, either a family member or a paid by the State fiduciary who is paid by the court and accountable to the court and NOT accountable to any family member. I am assuming there is no appointed DPOA? You don't mention one. If your Dad is not competent now it is too late to appoint a DPOA to act for him. If your father has a diagnosis, and you wish to be appointed to protect him and manage his money (it is a REAL task; don't take it on lightly) the see an Elder Law Attorney.
Often family steps in when the elder ends up in the hospital because they are in trouble or injured. Generally a social worker can get a judge to appoint a temporary guardian from the family; this is then more easily made permanent in court.
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to AlvaDeer

If your mother has a trust, I feel certain she'd have a Power of Attorney assigned to someone. Do you know who that person is? There are medical powers of attorney which assign someone the right to make medical decisions for the person, and there are durable powers of attorney that assign someone to make financial decisions. Sometime those two POAs name the same person. (I'm the successor Trustee and POA for my mother.)

If your mother is diagnosed as incompetent, then that's when the power of attorney kicks in. It'd be a good idea to start learning now about local memory care facilities, home care, and Medicaid if finances are an issue.
Helpful Answer (4)
Reply to MJ1929

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