My sister's tricked mom into signing medical and financial POA to them. Mom is mad and wants an attorney but they blocked me from mom and my sister is always there. Mom has stage 2 dementia if that. She had major surgery, that's when they had her sign she wanted to finish eating but they said this lady can't stay long (notery) so you need to sign or they might put you in nursing home. Mom signed, she always has said she never wants to live in one. They then put her house for sale. threw away lots of stuff including pictures she was writing names of who they were (she knew she would one day get dementia) is that elder abuse? she wants to remember. They gave away stuff. the big stuff is getting auctioned. Mom has no idea this happened but she wants to go to her own house. When elderly alone has surgery there confused a while but add dementia the confusion is longer. She was living in Arkansas since 1985 and does not want to live in wisconsin in winter
Anyone who tries to interpret case law and/or the effects on any field, including EP, is gambling. Paralegals could read case law and that was encouraged if the paralegal is interested, but they could NOT interpret or apply. That was absolutely, totally, strictly w/i the provenance of attorneys. Under no circumstances would I want anyone but an attorney to be reviewing and applying case law and new legislation to any EP document.
Granted, that may have changed since I quit working, but I rather doubt it.
"POA is done in a lawyer's office.
Whether or not it's notarized does not make it necessarily legal. "
This is not true. A POA and other documents can be executed anywhere, including someone's home and in a hospital. In my job working for EP attorneys, one attorney and a witness went to the client's home as the client was unable to get out and go to our law firm's office.
My sister's documents were executed in a hospital, as were my father's.
All of them were legal, and were prepared by a good, reputable firm, by an attorney who had been in the EP and EP litigation practice area for years.
I don't know if "legal" is the correct term for notarization as a necessity for documents. It does make them valid, which is the important consideration.
You are basically telling us here that your Mom is a PRISONER of her daughter to the extent that she cannot act for herself though she is competent to do so. Then you several times mention dementia.
You have currently a sister who is acting as POA, who is eliminating Mom's estate to pay for her care, and who is hopefully keeping meticulous records of all transactions and putting all funds in your Mothre's name. As you are estranged from the sister she is unlikely to share any knowledge with you, and under the law she not only doesn't HAVE to share info, but she should NOT share the infor on her parent's finances without the parent's permission.
You are left with two questions:
#1 Do you suspect the sister is acting fraudulently to enrich herself? If NOT, the step away. If you DO suspect this, Call Adult Protective Services to do a wellness check and tell them what you told us and give any documentation you have of fraudulent activity.
#2 Do you believe that your Mother is being held prisoner to the sister against her own will? If not, step away. If so call APS and report this.
You say your mother is afraid of your sister. POA is a very difficult job. She may be afraid your sister will throw up her hands and say "Fine, let sis do all this; I am OUT". I might.
As I said, your mother is likely very torn. If there is dementia at all then the stories you get may be skewed. As you are unable to speak with your sister overmuch (I imagine) there is little way to judge all that.
Wishing you good luck.
Whether or not it's notarized does not make it necessarily legal. You should talk to a lawyer. As for mom being deprived of her meal unless she signed this paperwork for your sister. Were you there to see and hear this for yourself? Your mother has dementia and it is very common for people to make up stories and events that are totally false to get attention. Stories like being deprived of food if they don't sign documents. Or people are stealing from them, and all kinds of things.
Let me ask another question. Who is "they"? You mention your sister, but whose the other person?
The best idea I think would be for you to sit down with your sister like adults and talk her about this without your being present. Give her a chance to explain herself and why she took the actions she has. It may very well be that she did what had to be done. Sometimes a situation looks very different than what we see or think it is.
In my own situation when my father became incapacitated, some people observing thought I was very harsh and cruel to his girlfriend. I wasn't. I did what had to be done. I was legally responsible for my father's care and I took my responsibility. I was not responsible to keep a roof over his girlfriend's head and provide for her out of my father's income. She wasn't my responsibility. Yet some people thought ill of how I handled things. Try talking to your sister first without judgment or rancor before going to see a lawyer.
I realize it is very upsetting that things seem to be moving forward and changing very rapidly. If she required anesthesia for her surgery there is a fair risk of it having a permanent impact on her cognition or advancing her existing dementia quicker so they were right in getting this paperwork done beforehand. Please keep an open mind and open line of communications with your sisters -- it is very possible they were doing their best for your mom in a tough situation, and it's going to continue to be a challenge to provide her care if you are feeding into her delusions about living on her own when she really no longer can.
What's your relationship with your sisters like? Is this about who gets power of attorney, or about whether your mother wanted to create one at all?