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My father died a few years ago, shortly after that my mother sold their home & moved into a ret. community. After a couple years there, she had a fire & was taken to the ER and transferred to a 'rehabilitation' home. According to what my parents always told me, and docs I saw when my father was still living, I was their POA. At this time, I contacted her lawyer to ask for copies of POA. He informed me he 'couldn't find it'. Prior to not knowing I couldn't get a copy of the POA, I had signed her papers & listed myself as POA - the facility requested a copy of POA and I told them I was working on it - because I was! Fast forward: whatever copies existed disappeared when my mother had the fire. The facility was used to dealing with me as her 'person' and I was always able to speak with them, etc. At this time, Medicare was paying for her care and I was paying her bills out of her main acct. Her checking acct. had ME listed as a co signor and the bank confirmed I was able to write checks, etc. After a few months in the facility, my mother was strong enough to move to asst.living. *She had been diagnosed w/Dementia at the facility. After discussing her situation with the Social Worker, it was evident she had been suffering w/mild Dementia for a couple of years. My aunt took her to the bank and she discovered a savings acct. with quite a bit of money in it - I believe it was the proceeds from the sale of their house. They called me from the bank and asked if I had known about this acct and I said No, I had no idea! I knew she had money somewhere but I only had access to the 'joint' account that I was listed on. The rep from the bank told me she wanted to send me a signature card, but my mother insisted that she would take care of getting my signature. Well, I never saw a signature card - nor did I see one for the Safety Deposit box she opened that week as well. Fast forward: while my mother was in asst living, she paid her rent and there were bills coming to my address, which I paid - some unpaid - mostly medical because there was insurance. She deteriorated quickly and was taken back to the hospital and then the nursing facility. With her permission, I began paying the facility out of her savings account. I would give the billing coordinator the account # and she would run a payment through. A friend of mine who happens to be a lawyer, told me regardless of her wishes, that I should NOT be paying her bills - he told me that I would eventually get in trouble - he warned me that facilities like the one she was living at were ruthless and would come after ME if a bill was unpaid. Well, they did - they sued my mother and me after I refused to pay a past due: they refused to show me detailed billing. The billing I HAD seen, had many errors on it that were corrected w/my prompting. My mother was running out of money -she was transferred to another facility, a Medicaid facility, and in the process of working with them to get her on Medicaid, a lawyer from one of those elder care groups took over her finances. I was so relieved - until the lady working on the paperwork at the facility accused me of spending my mothers money on things that were not approved - these things were specifically bought on my mothers instruction - as she had no way of buying gifts, she instructed me to buy certain things for a new baby in the family and I did - there were a few other items purchased on her credit card that she approved and were 'reimbursements' for money that my husband and I spent on her for supplies, etc. When I was accused of this, my mother told them that she had given me permission and to leave me alone - she felt as if they were attacking me for no reason. They apparently dropped the issue as I have never heard about it again - I had also paid the other home a good portion of what was owed them, and I never heard from them again. My mother passed away last Oct. and just prior to that, she called to tell me she had found my dad's will - she had it with her all along. It names me as Executor - my sister (who I had tried to work w/all along but constantly fought me) took the will when she cleaned out my mom's room - she refused to send it to me. The only thing I have are photographs of the pages. She told me she would not send it to me until "I took care of a few things" - which means: sign title of my mom's car (which my sister was in possession of and abandoned) to her, empty her safety dep box - neither of which I can DO without the WILL - I have cut my sister out of my life because she is so toxic - I have questions: mom never filed taxes from the time my dad died until she died - and I never had any paperwork other than a few bills and one checking acct. statements - mom was never able to furnish any old papers! I'm worried that the govt. will come after ME for any unpaid taxes - I wouldn't know where to begin! I paid a few of her bills and that is it - I have no will, nothing - what to do? Am I liable for anything?

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You need an attorney. From what I have heard on this site, you can ask your mom's estate to reimburse you if it is settled in your favor.
Money changes everything! Hire an attorney to sort all this out.
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I wanted to add a couple points but was cut off - sorry for the long post:
1) When I moved my mother to the 2nd home - I was told they would help me apply for Medicaid for her - they asked me for numerous documents, some of which I was able to supply, some I was not. I simply did not have the paperwork - either it was lost in the fire or taken by someone else *(I honestly suspect my sister since she had access to my mother's apt after the fire) and there were documents that I could not get because I had no POA - During this time, I was experiencing severe 'burn out' as I guess it's called. Between the horror of having my mom in a nursing home and her mood swings/dementia and putting so much guilt on me that I almost cracked, and my sister and my mother's issues with her - I was in the middle - I basically climbed under a blanket and was not as aggressive in applying for Medicaid as I should have been. I had spent two years on the phone with the previous home, trying to get doctor appts. for her with a Neurologist and get her some help - until they finally sat me down and told me 'Your mom is here to die. We will make her comfortable but she can't go seeing doctors outside the facility' then they told me that unless a person had millions of dollars or was taken care of in their home by a family member, all their money went to their care in the nursing homes until they were depleted, at which point state aid would take over. They told me this was a fact of life.
I never deceived my mother or stole a penny from her - so the insinuation that was made by the person applying for her state aid was both hurtful and totally unnecessary. My mother would call me and tell me 'she' was 'talking about me again', meaning this particular woman, and one day I was informed I had just spent 350$ from my mom's acct - this was WELL AFTER the financial aid person had taken over her accts - I contacted the bank immediately and they confirmed NOTHING had been touched not only by me, but that the last transaction I had been involved in had been MONTHS prior and it had been an EFT to pay an ambulance company. I contacted this person making the accusations and she told me that she 'heard' this, but she would not tell me WHO had supplied her with the FALSE info - or slander as far as I am concerned - and as I defended myself and told her to stop repeating these accusations that were not only untrue but hurtful, she refused to tell me who/what the issue was and hung up on me. My mother told me she was constantly coming into her room and badmouthing me and my mother had told her to knock it off - more than once. Something was fishy but I never found out the true story.
*2) My mother opened the safety deposit box and put her jewelry and some old coins in it. She lost both keys and in order to have it opened, I not only have to provide proof that I am executor, but I have to pay about 400$ to have it drilled open. The jewelry is to go to me, yet for some reason my sister thinks this box needs to be opened and one of her accusations is that I am not dealing with 'important issues' - the stuff in the box doesn't belong to my sister, and my mother constantly worried that my sister had the keys and would empty the box - (this gives you an idea how their relationship was -) There is no reason that I need to empty this box - it is a non issue as far as I am concerned.
3) my mother gave me the title to her car months before she had the fire. She was adamant that my sister NOT have or drive the car, but after she was in the home for a while, she agreed that my sister could drive it, as long as it was to take my mother to appts., but my sister soon had the car and it ended up as 'hers' - it was a constant fight with my mother and I told them both it was just a car and I did not want to hear about it ever again - it was incessant arguing! My sister insisted many times that I 'sign' the title over to her - I told her I would not do that because my mother was still able to sign her name and she would be the one to do that - not me. My sister finally abandoned the car at a local body shop, and to my knowledge, it has been there ever since. I actually have no idea where the title is because I have moved and I can't even find MY car title! This to me also is a non issue, because the car is NOT my sister's and again, NOT her issue to deal with. Again, with no will, I cannot do a d*** thing with that car!
*As far as I know, since my sister took the will and refused/refuses to send it to me, or file it for that matter, my mother is considered to have died intestate. The only proof I have of any will are photos my sister texted me, right after my mom died - she asked me what she needed to do, and I told her - send me the papers. She was furious, accusing me of 'naming myself executor' because I wanted to take charge. Yes, this is the mentality of the person I have tried to deal with - and this is why, nearly a year later, my sister is still harping to anyone who will listen (luckily I live far away and only have contact with my niece) - she seems to think my parents left some massive inheritance and I have told her many times - there was nothing left - I told her to look into the nursing home costs and figure out how much time our mom was living there - she is very ignorant and refuses to listen.
I am worried that I am going to be attacked by her and some lawyer, demanding things from me that I can't possibly give or do - is photographic evidence of that will enough to be able to 'take over' as executor and take care of these things for good? I want her to stop harassing my niece by complaining about 'issues your aunt refused to deal with' and I want this settled.
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You need a lawyer to help you with this.
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