Follow
Share

Have any of y’all experienced or went through this type of situation? I’ve been trying to move my mother back to Texas from New Jersey since March-April and the facility has made little to no progress. The social worker who started working there in March, doesn’t respond to any of my emails and goes on about her day. The administration was acting like he was doing something in the beginning but now he’s ignoring my emails. I contacted the ombudsman and department of health and they all said they can’t do anything about it. I contacted Disability Rights and they said they don’t handle those type of matters. At this point, I don’t know what to do. The social worker had told the administrator that my mother is not competent but my mother has told the past 2 ombudsman that have visited her that she wanted to come back to Texas. She doesn’t even have family in NJ. Rarely anyone visits her there, so why are they making this process so difficult? I explained to the administrator that we haven’t seen our mother (and she’s 48) in over a year now and I cannot afford a lawyer nor do I have the time to seek guardianship and it’s like they don’t care. I also got an email about how someone took my mother’s card and tried to deposit $800 into their account and then attempted to spend it again with a smaller purchase. Luckily, the card was locked and I informed the administrator that if it happens again, I will report the facility to the local police department. Ever since, he hasn’t responded to my email. This is one of the most bizarre situations I’ve ever been in my life. I tried getting help from everyone and at this point, I’m not sure what to do. It’s come to the point where I feel like the facility is keeping her against her own will for the money.

You can't do anything until you establish legal authority to act on your mother's behalf. You've said you're not the PoA and no one is. If your mother does not have a medical diagnosis of incapacity then she can make her own decisions, so if she wants to leave, she can. BUT, if she doesn have enough cognitive impairment she won't be able to act nor will she be able to assign a PoA. You sent her the paperwork but what is the protocol in NJ to finalize it? In my state it has to be notarized in front of 2 non-family witnesses. Everyone has to show ID. Outside of being able to do this, guardianship is the only other option IF your mom is cognitively or physically incapacitated.

Next problem to solve: even if you were able to get her out, medical transport will cost thousands of dollars. You can look up a company and they'll give you an exact estimate based on what type of vehicle and care she requires during the trip, and how many miles.

If you succeed in getting her to Texas you first need to find out how the guardianship transfers (I'm not sure so I would ask a social worker). Then you can help her apply for Medicaid in Tx, if she isn't already on Medicaid in NJ and if so, how and when that transfers.

I think the reason the facility workers don't respond to many of your inquiries may be because they legally cannot. If you are neither PoA nor guardian they have no business talking to you about your mom and her affairs. Sorry, but this is how the law works...it is to protect people and their privacy. You not being able to afford a lawyer is no one else's problem but yours and your mom's.

What I don't understand is if your mom has capacity, why isn't she working with you directly to move? If she is incapacitated, who is legally managing her affairs? Is the facility her guardian? If she isn't acting on her own, then who is currently her legal representative?
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to Geaton777
Report

You would need to first identify a NH in Texas that is willing to take her in a Medicaid pending status, if she's going to be a Medicaid patient.

You would then let THEM reach out to the NH in NJ. The logistics of getting her from one to the other will be daunting, especially if you don't have money to throw at the problem.
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to BarbBrooklyn
Report
SeasideTy Jul 13, 2022
I did choose the facilities and called them since the social worker wasn’t doing what she was supposed to do. They said she would need some type of income. The social worker in NJ received the SSI papers from social security and I told her to send it and she still hasn’t done it. But I will call the facilities and see if they could talk to the facility in NJ.
(1)
Report
See 1 more reply
I don't wish to pry since it wasn't disclosed, but I agree with AnnReid, 48 yrs is very young to be in placed in a care home/residential living. Think there must be more to the story.
Helpful Answer (0)
Reply to Beatty
Report
SeasideTy Jul 13, 2022
Yes, which is one of the reasons I’m trying to move her closer to us. Like venting said, she might not know how to leave and I’m trying to help her but the facility is making it so difficult.
(1)
Report
How are you attempting to move her back to Texas? They are certainly not going to drive her there or put her on a bus or a plane at their expense. Not to mention it likely would be unsafe to do so. The only way is for someone to go there, obtain guardianship, and then remove her from the facility.
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to mstrbill
Report
venting Jul 13, 2022
“They are certainly not going to drive her there or put her on a bus or a plane at their expense. Not to mention it likely would be unsafe to do so.”

Right.

And OP: since your mother is in the facility, I guess (even if she would be mentally sharp), she’s physically not able to manage all that alone: getting to the airport, etc.

And since your mother hasn’t tried to escape from the facility, I guess she mentally also doesn’t know how to go about leaving the facility. She would have left already.

She might not be mentally incompetent, but in some ways has cognitive decline and can’t figure out on her own, how to leave.

If she’s mentally competent, she’s allowed to leave whenever she wants to: she might be obliged to put in place certain care, before she’s allowed to leave. Again, since your mother hasn’t taken these steps, I guess there is some cognitive decline.

I agree with mstrbill: “The only way is for someone to go there, obtain guardianship, and then remove her from the facility.”
(0)
Report
See 2 more replies
Hi OP,

I read all your replies.

The facility has no incentive to solve the problem fast. They get money the slower this is solved.

I see I guessed right: no one has POA.

You emailed a model POA for your mother to sign: be careful. I myself don’t allow my elderly LO to sign anything without my presence. It’s hard enough to be careful of what you sign (read the small print) when you’re young and healthy. It’s risky for an elderly person to sign things, without you double-checking, being physically present during the signing.

They could give her any other document and ask her to sign. You never know.

There are bad people everywhere, also in facilities. Yes really. Don’t assume everyone in facilities has the best intentions for your LOs.

Also, a POA doesn’t just get signed by your mother: it’s not that simple. You must get a lawyer, or notary, to notarize/make the document legally valid — AT THE SAME MOMENT that your mother signs. A paper (POA) with only her signature on it means nothing. This is also to protect her. Signing POA is serious. It gives a lot of power to the POA.

You asked how to get guardianship if you have no money? I don’t think you’ll ever get a pro bono lawyer to help you. It costs a lot to get guardianship — that’s exactly why people sign a POA ahead of time to avoid all that. There’s no way around it: you’ll probably have to spend money, if you want guardianship.
Helpful Answer (0)
Reply to venting
Report

“The social worker had told the administrator that my mother is not competent but my mother has told the past 2 ombudsman that have visited her that she wanted to come back to Texas.”

As I mentioned, only a court can decide that someone is mentally incompetent.

A social worker is NOT allowed to decide that; nor a doctor at a facility. That would give them too much power; corruption; self-interested in keeping patients for their own financial gain.

Only a court can declare someone is mentally incompetent.

OP, from what I understand, no one has POA. Then the only option you have is to try to get guardianship.

You could physically go there and take your mother out - but if you don’t have POA, you’ll get into trouble.

Meanwhile, it doesn’t look like the facility is going to release her. They’re probably glad no one has POA; it means they have almost total power to decide (unless you OP get guardianship; then you’re the decision-maker).
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to venting
Report
SeasideTy Jul 13, 2022
I was starting to think that guardianship is the only option, but how does one do that if they can’t afford a lawyer? I looked for pro Bono lawyers everywhere in NJ and couldn’t find any.
(0)
Report
See 1 more reply
“I feel like the facility is keeping her against her own will for the money.”

YES.

Sometimes the only way is for you (person who is POA) to physically go there and take your mother out.

The facility clearly has no interest in solving this fast. The longer your mother stays, the more money they get.

Where there’s a will, there’s a way. Of course they could have replied to you. Ignoring you is disrespectful and cruel towards your mother who wants to leave asap.
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to venting
Report
SeasideTy Jul 13, 2022
I would definitely do that if I was financially stable to buy a ticket. Should I report it to the local police over there? I told the administrator strictly that I’m not going to stop until my mother is out that facility. You have no idea what I had to go through with this facility. I’m surprised how I made it this far.
(1)
Report
See 1 more reply
Needing to know- what type of facility in NJ is your mother’s current residence?

At her age, why was residential living necessary for her care?

Is she LEGALLY responsible for herself? If not, who has LEGAL (POA?) responsibility for her care?

It sounds as though you are attempting to connect and communicate to and through the appropriate channels, but I’m not sure you realize how terribly difficult EVERYTHING is, and has been, in parts of New Jersey since March 2020.

Please attempt to provide a few specific details about your mother’s needs.

I’m sure that any of us who have attempted to care for LOs through the last 3 nightmarish years will be more than glad to share what tools have helped them.
Helpful Answer (0)
Reply to AnnReid
Report
venting Jul 13, 2022
“At her age, why was residential living necessary for her care?”

I feel that’s none of our business; and it’s irrelevant for figuring out how to get her out.

The only thing that matters is, who is POA.

OP — if no one is POA, and if your mother was declared mentally incompetent (only a court can declare that) (a doctor’s opinion is not enough), then you’re in trouble.

Then, the ONLY way for you to be allowed to decide where she lives, is by you getting guardianship. That costs money and time. For this reason, people sign POA ahead of time, to avoid the whole guardianship process.
(0)
Report
See 1 more reply
Ask a Question
Subscribe to
Our Newsletter