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Durable Power of attorney(1)
I'm new to these message boards, but I have a question. My father was diagnosed with mixed dementia two years ago and at that time he was in the early stage. He and I agreed at that time that since the house was transferred to me many years before all of the household expenses would be transferred to me. So we did. But he kept his personal checking account and sends me money monthly. We also added me to his bank account. My question is since everything except a few of his credit cards is in my name do I still need a durable power of attorney? He and I didn't think we did but we just had an issue with his credit card company where they contacted Adult Protection Services. I guess they thought I was taking advantage of my dad instead of taking care like I have been. Any advice would be appreciated.
Yes, I think it is a good idea to have DPOA. You may need it for other things-like placement into a nursing home or if you need to talk to a federal government department.
If you don't want to go the route of DPOA, and the credit card company is having a fit about it, get your name on his checking acct and credit cards as well. The credit card company was only doing their job and that is a good thing because there are children who abuse their parents financially. Wish more credit card companies care enough to make waves instead of just caring about the money they make on CC usage. Good luck to you and your father. He sounds very dear!
Welcome to our world, Paula. I'm so glad you found us.
I echo those who say going to a Certified Elder law Attorney is a good move.
Without a DPOA you are always at risk of running into a problem. Even with a DPOA you can be reported to APS. You have fiscal responsibilities and how you handle them can be challenged.
What will you do about health without a DPOA? Will you be able to sign a DNR or stop meds etc.
It is by far best to have legal authority. I would not bother with a "chat" with ande attorney. I would go in to get one done. Hopefully it is not too late. I only paid $250 at a senior attorney's office. I met the attorney at a local caregiver's conference...she was wonderful and my husband, an attorney, agreed
Please let us know, We worry
I agree with the others that say to get the dopa. It has allowed me to deal with all of mom & Dad's accounts. Including the cellphone account. This power will allow you to be able to deal with anything that arises in the future.
Dad may do something not so smart because of the disease and the forms will allow you to correct, cancel or change if needed. Without the dopa you will have GIANT headaches.
You should also get on the credit cards. At some point in time you will want/need to cancel them. MUCH easier if you are on them and dopa. I know this first hand.
Another thing to consider is a freeze on his credit. That will significantly lower the possibility of identify theft issues. Does dad really need another credit card? Car loan? Mortgage? Or such thing?
Dealing with all these things now will make future issues from these easier to deal with. In the future, you will have to be dealing with much more stressful stuff and the disease.
Remember, you are not going behind Dad's back to do these things. You are not taking advantage of him. You are doing these to protect him and his stuff and his money. There are plenty of folks that pray on the elderly and sick. Dad's independence will be ending. These legal things will allow you to be his voice and protection.
Best wishes and good luck, Greg
Totally agree with the advice here to put a DPOA in place.
And, while you're at it, get a Medical POA in place as well. Also, while your Dad is able to consider this, you need to also establish a Living Will/DNR. This is all to plan for the future.