Enduring Power of Attorney question

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10 years 4 months ago #36846 by max2
A couple of you know that Mum has been diagnosed with dementia and advised by aged care specialist medical team to set up EPA's now.

Mum is refusing to do so, either with me or the public trustee. She says she is able to look after their affairs. She says Dad doesn't want to either, Dad says away from Mum he hasn't discussed it with her but knows he agreed to ''something'' she said to avoid another unpleasant argument.

Dad's not well either and doesn't need to be put in the middle.

I have tried to explain to Mum that EPA's need to be done when of sound mind, but this raises the question of who determines when she isn't of sound mind? When does an EPA become ''active''?

The medical team noted further deterioration between her July accident to the November one, and I feel she is getting worse.

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10 years 4 months ago #479388 by Ruth
We had real problems with that one. The demented can be really difficult to work with. I might PM you with some further thoughts.

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10 years 4 months ago #479391 by Mich
I'm so sorry to hear about your Mum. It must be terribly hard for her to come to grips with her diagnosis and I can understand if she's in denial and wanting to hold on to her independence. But it sure makes life a whole lot more difficult for you and your Dad, especially when you're having to deal with the impact of the diagnosis yourselves.

I don't have an answer, but it's certainly food for thought and something that as we get older we really need to think about - however unpleasant it might be. I think of it as giving a gift to my nearest and dearest by making life easier for them should I ever be faced with that condition.

Hope things can be resolved quickly and easily for you guys.

Cheers, Mich.

Good exercise for the heart is to bend down and help someone up. Anon.

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10 years 4 months ago #479398 by Stikkibeek
My mother and step father were very sceptical about signing an EPOA also, although they were in sound mind at the time and voiced concern that we were trying to "run off with their millions". We explained that EPOAs did not kick in until after a time when health welfare and financial matters got to be too much for them. We also recommended to them, that they discuss with their lawyer also. They were relieved when the lawyer advised to sign the papers and we were so relieved when they did too, as it gave us authority to put in place all those things that were needed for their care. They were included in all aspects as well, so were informed and in a position to object at least in the early stages.
I would advise getting your parents lawyer to give them independent advice. Explain to them how it works. If you can't get your mother to understand the benefits at least get your father to agree. Even simple things like paying their bills is a huge hassle if you can't access bank account stuff.
I had signing rights for my parents, and my step sister and I had joint authority, which we collaborated with and we kept their lawyer informed also.
It worked very well.

Different story with the in laws. They were of a stubborn mind set and we had so much stress trying to get help for them.

Did you know, that what you thought I said, was not what I meant :S

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10 years 4 months ago #479417 by max2
Many thanks for your thoughts. At the moment Mum won't even agree to see their solicitor, its a really distrust issue of everyone (so I'm not terribly insulted that its just a me thing:rolleyes:) at the moment is the same with her aged care medical team, her Doctor, the medicines she is on etc etc.

I'm taking Dad to a specialist appointment shortly so i think i will try and get him an appointment with his solicitor on the same day. Mum won't be with us, will see what he thinks.

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10 years 4 months ago #479422 by Organix
It is worth noting that having an EPOA in place is mandatory for residents of many retirement villages.

We had one in place for my mother when she moved into a Ryman village but unfortunately our solicitor who held the EPA died suddenly. A new EPA had to be set up (under me) but as my mother is also declining with dementia this was tricky.

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10 years 4 months ago #479424 by stephclark
also keep in mind that there are 2 types of EPA.. one for health and care matters ( ie decision to go into nursing home etc ) the other is epa over assets and finance..
maybe your mum would agree to the care epa and maybe have her lawyer with an epa for the finances..

good luck

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10 years 4 months ago #479450 by max2
I have put the public trustee/lawyer option to her in case its a ''me'' thing (im an only child and she keeps saying I get it all - whatever all is worth) but she is adament she doesn't need one, they have their Wills and they are not spending any money on lawyers fees (the latest reason).

I can't keep banging on about it, but I'm seeing my Father's health decline and he is the main care giver from what I see and hear. if and when something happens to him, what are the next steps if she won't sign an EPOA and suffering from dementia?

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10 years 4 months ago #479570 by Stikkibeek
You can get appointed as an "agent" through WINZ when there is no power of attourney, but you do need her signature for that. The only other thing you can do is apply to the courts to be granted EPOA, but often that will only be for health and welfare, and the court may well appoint a stranger to look after financial affairs. This process takes about three months.
I would suggest that is you don't or aren't in a position to approach a lawyer financially, then ask to see one at your local Citizen advice bureau, last I heard this service was free, but it pays to ask. That way, you will be able to find out all the relevant information. Someone above also mentioned that for someone to go into residential care, as may be what will happen to your mother, they have to have an EPOA.

Did you know, that what you thought I said, was not what I meant :S

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10 years 3 months ago #479580 by max2
Mum's dementia Doctor has made an appointment for another family meeting today which I am thrilled about. Not sure if Mum's Doc has called her in, but I'm grateful all the same.

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10 years 3 months ago #479582 by Stikkibeek

max2;483118 wrote: Mum's dementia Doctor has made an appointment for another family meeting today which I am thrilled about. Not sure if Mum's Doc has called her in, but I'm grateful all the same.


Thoughts are with you. Hope all goes well at the meeting.

Did you know, that what you thought I said, was not what I meant :S

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10 years 3 months ago #479609 by max2
An interesting experience. After weeks of being told I flatly refused to sign an EPOA document in 2009 (I really couldn't remember even being asked to sign and neither could Hubby) Mum caved in and telephoned the solicitor whilst I was there this morning to see if the unsigned documents she had could still be signed in 2014.

Turns out they did do EPOA's back then and I signed as the 2nd party on the forms, nicely filed away at the solicitors.

Phew!

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10 years 3 months ago #479610 by Ruth

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10 years 3 months ago #479615 by Stikkibeek
That will be such a relief to you. Once they have been lodged with the court you should get verification from your mother's solicitor. Get some copies of the authority/ies and make sure they are stamped with a certified stamp. You will find that you will need to produce them in all sorts of places once you begin to do the many little things associated. Telephone accounts, Bank statements (you can ask the bank for a duplicate copy of the statement if you also have Financial EPOA. ) tax, welfare, higher user stuff for medication, etc. You will be able to ask on behalf any questions of any agencies and get answers. Work with your father on all these things to begin with, so that he is assured you are doing all this for their benefit. He will probably be greatly relieved to shed some of the responsibility of care.
If your mother does need to go into residential care, there are some rules around property and how much your parents will be able to keep if they are eligible for subsidised care. Get your parents names down on the waiting list of a retirement/hospital care establishment, (preferably their choice, even if they don't need to be there yet. It becomes very difficult to get anyone into such a home at short notice. If they are on the waiting list, that makes life so much easier.
All the best

Did you know, that what you thought I said, was not what I meant :S

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10 years 3 months ago #479620 by max2
Thankyou Stikkibeak for that. Can I ask, when you say "lodged with court'' is this when her Doctor declares she is no longer able to undertake normal duties?

Its just my understanding that they are in a safe (or safe place) at the solicitors and I don't understand how the process works.

I have ordered a dementia booklet from Alz. Auckland to read having met their rep for Mum today at their place (that is who the appointment was for).

However knowing Mum googles like mad for medical info, its probably best I don't go into details here how that meeting went. [;)]

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