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With all the troubles I keep reading here, and elsewhere, and my own experiences, why in the world doesn't someone in Congress or each State, have some other entity other than POA. It's been said "POA is a license to steal" and gosh it sure seems that way to me. Do these POA entities ever work well, and have positive outcomes for the entire family?

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Grace, glad you brought up this question.... I need to talk to my parents as to Power of Attorney for them, who will they choose or will they choose an Attorney to be their POA.

I also need to get a POA for myself, too, I'm not a spring chicken any longer ;)
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I'm someone who does not have the POA, my Sister does, and she is not behaving correctly, and I wish I could have it changed. I wish there were some advocate for people in my situation.
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The POA I had for my mom made all the difference in getting things done. Anyone who is POA of course has to be trustworthy. I would have had to go through endless hassles and headaches if we hadn't set up POA long before we needed to use it. My mother refused medical tests. I just stepped up, signed for her, and she got them.
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My husband just had to drive up from Southern CA to Spokane, WA because he found out his mother hadn't paid the taxes on her house in 4 years. He'd been after her for about that long to give him POA, and she hadn't done it. It turns out that it wasn't that she didn't have the money, but she'd heard that she could get a discount if she was over 65 and had income below a certain level. That's true, but you do have to file certain paperwork. She didn't do that, so her house was in foreclosure. Doug got up there, he got her to pay 1 years amount of taxes to keep it out of foreclosure, then they are filing the paperwork for the other 3 years to get the discounts, and will then the other 3 years. At which point he will get that POA so this never happens again. She was almost at the point of being tossed out on the street. She almost had her lights turned out. She has the money - she just needs someone to take care of paying the bills in a timely manner. That's what a POA is for.
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Hi there, it has worked out for us so far. I became the POA for my mother in September of 2012 (she could no longer live alone at that time and moved in with me). It has allowed me to make her bank deposits (pension, and medication reimbursements), pay her bills (cable, cell phone, magazines), I was able to preplan her funeral, talk to her Dr.s, sell her home etc. BUT, from what I see on here as far as family disputes...I'm an only child and so is my mother. There is nobody to question where her money goes. As far as the stealing end of it goes, there was never even a temptation. My mother doesn't have that much money. She was able to buy her own groceries, pay a little towards utilities, and pay for respite care. I keep receipts for EVERYTHING. She is now in assisted living, but if the time ever comes that she would have to apply for medicaid, I feel that I'm prepared. I do feel bad for the people that are outright being taken advantage of and I always feel bad reading about the stories where siblings had fought over stealing, POA rights, and end up never talking to each other again. My mother could no longer handle her checking account anymore. Before she moved in, she started calling me crying about how she would right a check and it didn't, "look right". (for some reason, she would have the dollar value written in correctly, but couldn't handle the cents). It works for us, but we aren't talking BIG MONEY, and there is nobody else to take the job.
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During WWII millions of wives had POA while their husbands were overseas, and even today POA's are pretty common. It's always the bad news that makes the headlines. 99% of POA's do the right thing.
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I was POA financial and medical for both my parents, there was never any issue with other family members. Plus trustee of both my parents trusts. My brother and I are still on very good terms. Had they not have had the paper work in place, their wishes might possibly have not been known or honored. It certainly made it easier for me to follow through on their wishes.
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I have POAs on my mom for both property and healthcare. It's worked fine for our family. I have a brother who has left all of the caregiving to me and hasn't disagreed with anything I've done. When my mom goes, I'll handle her estate. So in our family, it's worked just fine. There's no way in this universe my mom could be handling decisions for either area at 94. I have always put my mom's interests first and am proud of how I've handled her finances and healthcare. I'm sure there's a lot more families just like mine.
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I don't agree that it's a license to steal. Abuses can arise in many situations, in elder law administration as well as other aspects of life. That includes Medicaid, welfare, lobbying, voting, sports (think of doping) ... you name it.

That doesn't invalidate the need for powers of attorney, whether they're durable or medical.

And God forbid that Congress tackle the issue of authority delegation. Given their recent history, they'd never even be able to agree on anything but would waste time and money having hearings to help them understand what they don't.

And out of curiosity, what would you suggest to replace powers of attorney?

I can attest to the viability and necessity of authority delegations for living but temporarily incapacited situations as well as death situations.

It's unfortunate that you don't have good experiences, and remember that the questions being raised here relate only to problems, not success stories.
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