Bills are paid automatically, so we don't know where the money ($1000-1500/mo) is going. Mom has dementia, FIL is right behind her, beginning stages. My husband has financial POA but Elder Care attorney says that without going to court for conservatorship, we can't control their spending. How is this going to affect the spend down when she needs Medicaid? She is 91, he is 89. He may be sending cash in mail to various "charities" and for supplements such as "stem cells" which are totally take but we can't convince him to stop.
In cases where an elder's finances are minimal and a single bank account can be restricted, it may be possible to manage an elder's decline in capacity with a POA document.
But you are describing a case where the work involved with gaining Probate Conservatorship can save your parents and your family from much greater stress in the future. Conservatorship is the only way you can compel third party financial institutions to comply with restrictions needed to stop the drain of funds to financial predators.
Beyond the tragedy of lost resources that could have been used for care, the end game if Medicaid eligibility becomes necessary involves a severe accounting nightmare. A Medicaid application will require you to explain the transfers of drained funds.
Chaos during the 5 year look back period makes the Medicaid Application preparation 100x more burdensome than if a Conservator starts right now with the tasks of managing and accounting for your parents' life savings.
Keep a stockpile of “openers” in your head - to get Mom & Dad to open up about who they see and who they interact with.
Who bought the Jones’ house at the end of the street? Who do you trust to service your car, now that Bob’s Garage is closed? Is XXX’s niece still a cashier at Walmart? Muse that you see (or don’t see) a lot of families with young kids in your parents’ neighborhood now. Ask your parents who cleans their gutters, who mows their lawn, etc (act like you want a recommendation for someone).
Every time you see Mom & Dad, make sure that some aspect of your conversation spurs them to reveal something about their little world.
If Mom or Dad mentions a “nice single mom” or “fella who’s down on his luck,” pay special attention.
Really to paraphrase, “it takes a village to keep an elder in their home”. And you just must to try to know to some degree who all are part of your folks village. Especially important if you do not actually live in the same city (or state!). If that means you get onto the Next Door app or you join their neighbor association, you do it; and you actually go with them to their weekly lunch/ dinner/ novena/shabbat when you come in to visit them.
His parents have given him POA. This means that they have trusted him to manage their affairs in the future, when they no longer can. He can explain to his father that without information about their finances, including who is receiving their money, he cannot do the job they have appointed him to do.
His father is more likely to be open with him about where the money's going if your husband doesn't argue with him about his choices.
This option will frustrate them and make them angry, but isn't it better than them being broke???
As their financial POA, your husband must prevent them from squandering their liquid assets. It's also important for their dignity to give them an "allowance".
Losing and misusing money is part of the disease we broadly call dementia. Therefore, limiting the amount of money they can lose or misuse is a way to limit your and your husband's frustrations with their unwise and irrational behavior.
You mentioned church. Do you think they are donating to the church? Some churches ask for lots of money.
There is NO paper trail for any of this money and THAT can become a problem if Medicaid is needed. There would be NO proof that this money isn't being handed to their children.
Folks who are competent can make their own stupid decisions. That does not, however, obligate their children to rescue them from their poor decisions after the fact.
If the current laws permit elders to be taken advantage of financially, I don't see how the government [aka Medicaid] can then deny funding for care just because they've lost money to swindlers.
please please asap go thru whatever paperwork on these, especially if they are actually getting real bullion or “collectible” coins or “shares on paper”. Really silver as investments tend to be scams. The hook that is used is is “silver paid $50 oz in the past & it’s coming back” nonsense as your parents are old enough to remember the Hunt Brothers & the silver rush that they missed out on....... Yeah in like 1980. And back then I wore a size 4-6 and those days are not, NOT, coming back.
Silver is like maybe $15 and that’s kinda spot price for certified bars (these babies are weight stamped & have some sort of paperwork as to provenance as where mined - like 5 oz. Perth) for quite a while. There is / was a big scam going on with silver, where you buy a collectible silver coin for $100. But coin wasn’t a true rare or precious worth $100 on open market. It actually has a melt value or spot price of $45 -$55. Literally you loose half of your $ immediately.
Theres a whole series on the silver scam just this last Nov & Dec in Quartz by Jeremy Merrill entitled “Mining for Silver”. The scammers prospect & use Facebook and conservative talk radio. Lisa Rowan also has written on this in different financial advice columns for other publications (she has great & often hilarious podcasts too).
really if your folks are getting silver scammed, their info is being sold and they are going to be approached on other even more dubious “investments”. They are gonna get fleeced. Please please try to get over soon to clearly review what exactly it is that they are buying. There are legitimate ways to invest in rare coins & precious metals (1 of the best companies worldwide is in my city) but these are going to be $ 25k, 50k $$$+ coins with provenance. Not $1,000 buys. Not sending cash or money orders in the mail to buy stuff.