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I am looking to sell our paid-for home and buying something smaller so I can better care for husband as long as I have him. I/We have been prequalified for a mortgage. Once we've moved, I will sell our home. I have a POA for Sale, but I currently have no control over the various annuities and IRA. I don't know my next best step. Thank you

You need to be protected and to do that you need to get beneficiary designation form for each IRA your husband has. You have to be the designated beneficiary as spouse to be able to directly inherit and not have the IRA go directly to his estate. If no one named as beneficiary and it goes to the estate, you will incur taxes, delay and stringent rules you will not incur as inheriting spouse. On the annuity, you need to find out if it will continue paying out after his death. If so, find out if you are named beneficiary as spouse. If not, follow getting a proper designation to take effect after his death.
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Reply to earlygirl42
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You do not want to get into such a bind that you spend everything on him in the long term. Your state determines how much you can keep as his wife. You should spend on an elder law attorney to protect your assets and slow the bleed. What do you mean I / we qualify for a mortgage? If he or you dies while paying this mortgage, your Social Security will be reduced putting the mortgage underwater. Make sure the POA is valid for the transaction. I am wondering why you are getting a mortgage when you can put the larger home on the market first. Once you get a contract then you can get another place. Even if you have to rent and store furniture for x couple of months.You may prequalify, but the paperwork for the mortgage is a tremendous amount of work these days.
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Reply to MACinCT
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Imho, you'd do yourself a favor by hiring an elder law attorney.
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Reply to Llamalover47
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No matter what, immediately get complete POA and a health care POA for him too and do your own paperwork for you too at the same time. You will soon need to be in total control - do NOT wait. Do this now. Also talk with the customer service people in the various investments for how to advice when.....
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Reply to Riley2166
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I agree with getting an attorney to help you. Every state and country has different laws. Along with a P.O.A, you may want a Trust with you being the Trustee, and ask about community property, so if and when you dear husband passes, you will not have to go through the courts. All assets will automatically pass to you. There is no law that says you can't ask for help in making decisions
in behalf of your Husband But never, never give up your right to be the one who makes all the final decisions.
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Reply to llmusick
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I would contact an elder law attorney to assist you with these matters. In my opinion, you need a POA not only for financial but medical matters should you become incapacitated.
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Reply to Peanuts56
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Yes the purpose of the POA originated because it was a given people could speak to the spouse on any subject. With the POA you select who you want to be your POA. This was especially true to second marriages. Adult children wanted to make sure the new and improved model of step parent didn't have authority in pulling the plug and speeding up inheritance. Many other reasons as well. You absolutely must have a POA over health and over finance.
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Reply to commutergirl
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Simple answer: Go see an elder law attorney now. They the answers to ALL of your questions concerning your situation. Don't go on hearsay with piecemeal answers or suggestions on here regarding your financial matters and your home. It costs approximately $200.00 or $250.00 for one hour of answering your questions and it will be factual and legal. That's what I did when I had POA for my parents. Saved me a ton of grief and worry.
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Reply to elaineSC
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Riley2166 May 18, 2020
And some give free consultations in the beginning. Good luck.
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Get property in Survivorship, not Tenants in Common.
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Reply to Ganaple
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You need to get your "ducks in a row," so to speak, ASAP. You need to get a DPOA for all of his financial matters, since he is not going to be able to handle them.
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Reply to dragonflower
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You don't mention if he is a veteran receiving benefits. If so, check into having VA declare him incompetent and you fiduciary. And yes, you do need a PoA, and I also recommend a Medical Advance Directive (not a Living Will whose loopholes you can drive a hearse through)
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Reply to gaknitter
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Judysai422 May 18, 2020
Did some research on LW and AD. They vary by state. This might help. http://www.agis.com/Document/455/the-difference-between-an-advance-care-directive-and-a-living-will.aspx
In AZ, our elder law attorney drew up a LW. We had no issue with any medical professional not following it.
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Yes you should have his PoA. Although your husband has dementia, he may be considered legally competent. Competence levels change and there may be days when your husband can understand what it is he's doing when he signs the PoA. (Even if yesterday, he could not have executed this.) See an elder lawyer who understands dementia and you may need input from your husband's GP or geriatrician. Good luck.
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Reply to thepianist
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I suggest you talk to a lawyer. But a financial POA would make it easier to manage anything with your husband's name on it. A medical POA would help with his medical care as well.
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Reply to Taarna
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I am not sure why you wouldn't have control over annuities and IRA...More important than seeing an Elder Care Attorney (which is good advice), please see a Medicaid Attorney. The two attorney types are not synonymous. You need to understand Medicaid rules and keeping your home as a spouse. Knowing the whole picture will help you make decisions. You don't mention if you have children, but if you do, creating a trust WILL NOT protect assets from Medicaid, rather a trust merely bundles the assets into a nice package for Medicaid to devour. With the coming economic downturn -- economists say 12-15 months away, it's important that you understand how to take charge of every dime.
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Reply to ArtMom58
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Isthisrealyreal May 18, 2020
Just so you know, a certified elder law attorney is a medicaid expert. They take the time to learn everything that needs to be done or could potentially happen as we age.

That is why it is so important to find a certified elder law attorney and not just an elder law attorney. Any attorney can sign up with naela without any qualifications for the job title.

wwww.nelf.org can help you find a certified elder law attorney in your area.

I have found that they are more reasonably priced because they do thos day in and day out.
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POA or someone like this to Be Trusted....Yes, for Both of you.
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Reply to Parise
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YES! YES! YES!

Pls see a certified eldercare (aka elder law) attorney immediately. Not just any attorney. Eldercare attorney. Not cheap but oh, so so worth it.

Good luck.
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Reply to Worriedspouse
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Are there children or step-children? If steps that needs careful consideration

See an elder law attorney.
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Reply to gladimhere
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I have a general question: assuming the OP is same or close in age to her husband and successfully becomes his durable PoA, in the event the OP dies before him (God forbid) who legally takes over his care? Does he become a ward of the county if no one else steps up for guardianship? Something to ponder that maybe the OP needs have husband assign a co-PoA (someone much younger, local and trustworthy). I'm hoping MrsHoover has a durable PoA assigned for herself, too.
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Reply to Geaton777
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You already have a POA for sale, so if your husband is in the early stages of dementia and still has the mental capacity to grant you his financial and healthcare POA, that should done. The POA for sale doesn't allow you to make financial and healthcare decisions for him, only to sell the property. Engage an elder care attorney to create both a DURABLE general (financial) POA and a DURABLE healthcare POA. These will allow you to both handle his financial affairs and make healthcare decisions for him. Neither POA will allow you to change beneficiaries (hopefully, you are his beneficiary).
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Reply to sjplegacy
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Highly recommend quickly finding a reputable attorney and also a financial planner/CFP (get references!) with tenured experience to help you navigate and plan through your current and future situation. Too difficult to try and do this without that expertise.

My heart goes out to you and your husband.
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Reply to Love-and-Hope
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