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My sister lives in a different state than I do with her boyfriend. Her son has a POA but is mentally unable to perform what needs to be done. She is refusing to go to assisted living. What can her boyfriend do, as she is living with him and the care will fall to him?

He has no rights. The hospital can even refuse him visitations.

this is one of the reasons Gay Rights movement fought for so many years to have the right to legally marry.
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Reply to Katiekate
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She can become a ward of the state.
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Reply to BarbBrooklyn
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Her boyfriend can do nothing. But sis can and maybe has had a new POA prepared, and then, only if she is considered competent can she sign it, then only if she is incompetent can boyfriend use it.
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Reply to gladimhere
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It all hinges on whether your sister can be judged mentally competent to make her own decisions and whether she understands and accepts that her son will fail in his duties as her POA. Because you asked this question, are you planning to take matters into your own hands? Her live-in really has no obligations to care for her if nothing to that effect is legally on paper and binding. He can just walk out if things become to stressful for him. If you see this on the horizon and want to become involved, investigate who drew up the original POA and see if they can help.
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Reply to Ahmijoy
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Speedskater Sep 12, 2019
I can't take care of her and so far, he seems willing to do it. Time will tell. I really don't feel it is my responsibility. I have other siblings and they are unable to take responsibility either. She is pretty much on her own if her boyfriend and/or son walk away from it all.
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(Looking this over, I see I may be a little bit grumpy this morning. If I offend anyone, I'm sorry in advance)

I'm wondering a little bit what's actually happening here? Your question is about what 'rights' her boyfriend has if he's not the PoA. You say you don't feel it is your responsibility. You say she has given her son Power of Attorney but he is not 'mentally able' to do what needs to be done. Sounds confusing.

Is her son cognitively impaired? struggling with mental illness? or do you just mean that he's having the customary amount of emotional turmoil over a parent's decline? or do you mean he's not doing what you think he should?

You say she is 'pretty much on her own if the boyfriend and/or son walk away' ... okay, but that's true for nearly everybody: if the closest live-in family walk away, we are on our own.

You also say she is refusing to go to AL and that the boyfriend seems willing to care for her.

So what's really the issue here?
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Reply to maggiebea
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Speedskater Sep 16, 2019
She has enabled her son his whole life. He is basically a 53 year old child that wants his mommy to do everything for him and she has complied with this her whole life. When he says jump she jumps. He has issues with anger and frustration and can barely handle his own life without her, so no, I don't think he is mentally capable of negotiating the system to get her help. He has never even talked to her signifigant other because he is resentful that said "signifigant other" took his mommy away from him! The only emotional turmoil he has is that she can't seem to do things for him anymore. He was starting to get abusive with her when she couldn't understand what he wanted her to do. As for my responsibility......I am adopted and 20 years younger than her. She has 2 other siblings that won't do anything and seem to think that because I stayed in touch with her and took care of our Mom when she had dementia that I am the one who is supposed to take care of her too. I just got done going thru this with my MIL also and I am done! I have health issues of my own as well as my husband having health issues and that is my priority here. Why am I responsible more than her other two siblings? The "issue" is that the boyfriend seems willing, but I'm not sure what he can and can't do. I was just asking what happens in a case like this. If it seems confusing, it's because it's complicated as situations like this usually are!
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I don't think I understand why the son, your nephew, is unable to use his power of attorney. When you say he is "mentally unable" - for why? In what way?

Surely, if he had a known, well-established learning disability, or a debilitating mental illness, your sister would not have asked him to accept this responsibility; so what's the problem?
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Reply to Countrymouse
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Speedskater Sep 16, 2019
He is basically just useless. She has enabled him for his whole life and he is basically a 53 year old that still makes his mommy do everything for him. He has never been diagnosed with anything, but he's not very good at handling things he doesn't understand and won't try. Has frustration and anger issues and has never been forced to stand on his own. He says jump and she jumps willingly. Her fault really and now she is paying for it.
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Her boyfriend can refuse to care for her and move out.

What is your sisters plan for getting care for herself? Is she competent enough and wealthy enough to hire in-home caregivers?
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Reply to BarbBrooklyn
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"What can her boyfriend do, as she is living with him and the care will fall to him?"

He can, if he so chooses, provide in-home care for as long as he can and wants to. No one will take that away. However, without POA (medical and financial), he likely will run into issues. There are forms the hospitals/doctors use that she might be able to sign to allow him at least access to medical care, but probably not decision making if she needed extensive treatment. Without DPOA he technically can't manage her finances. If they have a shared bank account and her income (retired?) is direct deposited, he *can* use the account to pay bills, however there are rules about that (esp SS)- so long as no one questions anything, it can work, but if he decides to walk away, what then?

"I can't take care of her and so far, he seems willing to do it. Time will tell. I really don't feel it is my responsibility. I have other siblings and they are unable to take responsibility either."

Although it still means participating and some effort on someone's part, please understand that having DPOA and MPOA DOES NOT REQUIRE the person to provide the CARE. You handle the finances and medical decisions, but you do not have to care for her. If one of you decides you can do this, at least temporarily, and you find an attorney who will test/accept her ability to sign, the old POAs can be negated and new POAs added. At least for the short term someone can be "in charge." POAs can also be declined at any time.

If no one takes on these tasks, someone will have to ensure that the state "takes over" and assigns guardianship. Once the state steps in, you have no say in anything, how her funds are used, what happens to any of her assets, where she lives, how she is cared for, what treatment she gets.

Also note (many don't understand this!) - having any kind of POA does NOT allow you to forcibly move anyone. You can choose a place, sign paperwork FOR the person, arrange payments from their funds, etc, but oftentimes trickery or a medical emergency is needed to facilitate the move, especially when they refuse (been there, done that with our mother!)
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Reply to disgustedtoo
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AlvaDeer Sep 15, 2019
And, according to what I have seen Cali and others post, if you are POA or official guardian it is very UNLIKELY you could ever get PAID as a caregiver, if that is what they are thinking. I think they should see a lawyer.
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You do not say what is wrong with your sister? If her son has POA and is unable to perform those duties her significant other can do this if she withdraws appointment of son and assigns significant other. I am assuming they are long with one another and in trusting relationship. She can assign him to quite a few things, just as she could, in fact, assign a trusted friend. If they have not already done so, they might want to see an Elder Law Attorney before becoming LEGAL significant others; my Partner and I are "Domestic Partners" in the State of California. Federally that is not recognized. So we can file together for income tax in State of California, but not in Federal system yet have to send papers to feds to say we can legally do this in California and it all gets very complicated. Where it REALLY gets complicated is that it does in some states (check their own) "marry" you for all intent and purpose, say for medicaid qualifications and so on. I would not do it unless there is great benefit for you in some way, because getting out of it amounts to same procedure as for divorce and would need to happen for division of assets, and etc. Any time you have the Feds looking at you one way and the State another it isn't really a good thing.
Anyway, they should definitely go together to an Elder Law Attorney. Again, you do not say how disabled you sister is--that is in what manner, for if she has now gone into dementia she can no onger change the POA. Having a mentally unable son assigned would be a complete mess if they are NOT married or Domestic Partners, in so far as guardianship. I am saying, if someone else in family wants guardianship they are more likely to get it.
So key things here.
1. In what way is your sister disabled so that she cannot manage her own affairs
2. What are the LEGAL ways she and her significant other are attached
3. How long has she been with that person/how trustworthy does family she him to be
4. What other family is involved?
5. In what way is son "mentally" unable? What is his legal diagnosis? How did he get appointed if mentally unable?
I would suggest a trip to an elder law attorney.
I see below you said "not competent. That means she CANNOT change her POA to the boyfriend at all. You may eventually be looking at guardianship by the state. You don't want it. The boyfriend can't get it, and the current POA apparently cannot do it. It is kind of a mess. So very sorry.
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Speedskater Sep 16, 2019
Sister has stage 2 Dementia. She lives with her significant other but they are not married. Relationship of 18 years. Other family unwilling or unable to get involved (my other sister seems very good at telling me what to do but would never step up herself and seems to think it is my responsibility). Significant other seems motivated to help and I don't see him bolting, but he is approaching 90 yrs old, so may be limited in what he can do. Son is basically useless and has been all his life. She has always enabled him, bailed him out, done everything for him, even now when he is 53 years old. No legal diagnoses for son, but has many, many issues that render him barely able to run his own life without her help.
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Her boyfriend can be her caretaker as long as he is willing to do that. He has no legal obligation to do so nor does he have any legal rights to make decisions for her or handle her medical or financial affairs.

If she is competent she can revoke son's POA and designate boyfriend or somebody else.

It appears none of her children beyond the "incompetant" son are able or willing to take on her care.
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Reply to RedVanAnnie
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