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I’m so close to getting the lettters I need. Mom's spending at the Casino is out of control. Her “caretaker” husband does not do what’s in her best interest. I don’t want to separate them, but need to protect mom from a self-serving husband. I’m sure this will be the battle of my life as Mom is very stubborn and quite unreasonable presently. Thanks for your advice.

I was appointed guardian of my mother due to the fact that I had to get her out of an abusive situation with my sister. We had originally petitioned as co-guardians, but once the physical and financial abuse was discovered it kind of fell to me.

The first things I did were:

1. Close her old accounts and transfer them into what they call here guardianship accounts on the advice of mom's attorney. Same funds, same everything but for legal purposes the accounts say "Guardianship of (mom's name), an Incapacitated Person" and below that, my name as Guardian. Whenever I have to sign any kind of banking, medical forms, etc., I always sign it my name, Guardian for (mom's name), as I am acting on mom's behalf as her representative, not in my own personal capacity.

2. Assess her bills and finances to write out a budget and which bills are due when, etc., and I signed up for online banking and payment where possible to make them easier to pay each month.

3. Spoke with mom's health insurance company and doctor's offices and sent them guardianship paperwork so that they could discuss mom's medical and billing information with me over the phone, and so that I could follow up with her doctors about getting proper referrals, etc.

4. Opened a P.O. Box at the post office to receive her mail in a secure place and filled out a change of address form on her behalf.

5. Checked mom's credit report to make sure no new accounts were opened up in her name while all of this was going on.

I have stayed in communication with mom's attorney throughout all of this, and will continue to seek advice as we go along. A good attorney is vital to be able to answer questions, give advice and help ensure that financial and legal matters are handled correctly and in your loved one's best interest.
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Reply to FrazzledMama
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CountryGirl -

I'm in a situation similar to yours. I have "springing" PoA and need letter of incompetency from doctors to activate it. Before I respond to your question, I have one of my own. My parents' doctor does not have a form or template for writing this kind of letter. I've been looking for examples to provide my own suggested wording to the doctors (adding key statements from my elder care attorney). I'm having difficulty.  What was your experience like requesting these letters?

As for me, I have an elder care attorney who has been advising me on what to do. So far, I have been able to complete most of the tasks with the cooperation of my parents and have not needed the PoA. Attorney says PoA and letters of competency are needed now to keep me out of trouble with APS, SSI, etc., and will eventually be needed when parents become uncooperative. Here's my action list from attorney:

* Get name on safety deposit box signature card
* Once box is accessible, move all important documents (wills, PoAs, etc) to new box they don't have access to
* Get name on all financial accounts
* Once on account, establish separate online banking credentials for my use only
* Submit form to become SSI personal representative
* Create new savings account with me and parents as owners, that will be difficult to withdraw money from (no checkbook, no debit card, new account number, etc)
* Sign up for online banking for new account
* Create automatic online transfers from their accounts (that I am now on) to new account (that we are all on, but they don't have easy access to) that moves their SSI deposits and my dad's pension deposit, making sure to leave some spending money
* Set up auto bill-pay for utilities and monthly statements using the new account

They have one credit card and the balance is paid monthly from the new account. I watch the use of the card online. I also keep an eye on their checking account to make sure that they have enough spending money but not enough to cover a large check (mom is giving money away left and right). I found $85,000 in matured savings bonds in their box. I moved them to my new box but have consulted with attorney becuase parents are not on new box signature card.

This is all new to me also, so I'm sure I missed something. But I hope it gives you some ideas.

shlomo
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Reply to Shlomo
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My husband, just today, went to the court house to pick up guardianship paperwork, so I'm greatly interested to see the responses. We need to get guardianship, in this case, for so many reasons, and the first one is her house and property, it can't be sold because of the way the lawyer worded the will, she (my mil) did a medical poa but didn't set up a financial poa or a directive (dnr or tube feeding? which I have read that tube feeding is a no, and have been told by relatives that are in the medical field that a dnr is best to have due to age). I think my husband's next step would be to seek the advice of an elder care attorney.

This disease (she, my mil has alzheimers) is definitely AWFUL and has been a true learning experience for sure.
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Reply to Lostinthemix
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Countrygirl3,

Please do NOT let one reply chase you from this site... I was a lurker and reader for a while and one night in desperation I poured out all my feelings here and I mean all. It was a mistake as I quickly received a few responses that insinuated things about my character. I've been caregiving between my mom and dad since 2002 but that night my feelings were so raw. I left the site properly chastised. I soon realized that I missed it.. the smart caring people here outnumber the quick to judge without facts. Let's face it ... none of us will ever know anyone else's complete story and that's ok... I came back here with a different attitude and take what I need ... answer if I think I can be of a little help..and keep my feelings about my siblings to myself as that is what seemed to spur the responses of judgement.

Please don't leave the site ... the wonderful posters here have saved my sanity on more than one occasion.
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Reply to Mimi-of-2
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Just ignore Shaking.

Have you visited an Eldercare attorney to discuss what actions you can take legally once mom is found incompetent?

Guardianship will give you the unquestionable ability to place her in a facility or bring carers into her home over her objections. But you will also become responsible for her finances and person, and will need to report all pending, actions to the court.

Guardianship is a big step. Please seek legal advice before you do so.
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Reply to BarbBrooklyn
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I think you have to separate the concerns. State the aging issues. Then one can see that her spending might be dangerous especially if her funds could soon be limited. If she is not of right mind to a degree you would go from there. I have had to open and close about 6 credit cards because of scams my mother signed up for. It was exhausting. If she cannot drive she could not get herself to casinos.
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Reply to Riverdale
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I’ll be the first to admit I’m not the best at saying what I want, but I find your insinuations totally off point..I’m only concerned with my mother’s best interests..This is all new to me so please forgive me if I sound all over the place..If you have no tolerance for newbies so to speak, then this isn’t the site for me..
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Reply to Countrygirl3
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Shakingdustoff, what are the reasons if I might ask?
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Reply to Countrygirl3
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Her husband had a mild stroke a month ago and now has been told not to drive..Before the stroke he wouldn’t think of letting mom drive, but now, suddenly it’s ok..She has also been told not to drive..for safety reasons
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Reply to Countrygirl3
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Her neurologist has recommended the family seek guardianship, will this make a difference..She has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s also
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Reply to Countrygirl3
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https://www.agingcare.com/questions/-i-suspect-mom-with-alzheimers-is-being-taken-advantage-of-financially-by-her-husband-434299.htm

This has been going on for some time from the looks of it. It is hard to watch but our folks have the right to make their own bad decisions.
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Reply to gladimhere
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