Family fallout

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Our family 4 sisters have completely fallen apart since father died Dec 2016 mum has severe dementia 2 sisters were executors of dads estate and nothing has been passed over to mum although she was only beneficiarie of his estate I have power of attorney for mum and realised her wedding and eternity rings have been taken by sister how should I handle this as a daughter does she have the right to “ look after “ them
Hi Elizabeth , that does sound sad. As mum has advanced dementia, keeping her rings safe is probably a good idea, as anything could happen to them ranging from putting them away in the fridge to wrapping them up in toilet paper and flushing them away. If mum is in the habit of taking them off , probably not a good idea to leave them in the house if multiple carers are coming and going. Perhaps a family chat to put your mind at rest with sisters- where shall we keep mum's things so they are all safe until we all have to deal with probate later ( is there anyone obvious who will be the chosen one?)
Has mum made a will?
Executors are supposed to "execute" the will, i.e. follow dad's instructions.
As you have POA, I think you need to take legal advice asap so that money isn't "disappearing". Any costs should come out of mum's bank account, not yours.
Who is now handling mum's benefits etc.?
Maybe, too, it's time to 'look ahead' for after your mum eventually dies. Who will execute HER will, and how is it devised - ie, is she leaving her entire estate equally between you all, etc. And then, if so, what happens to individual items. Has she specified, say 'My wedding ring I leave to my eldest daughter' or whatever?

She can't make a new will now, with dementia, but do you have a copy of her existing one? It would allow you, perhaps, as far as individual items are concerned, to perhaps divvy them up now? Officially, of course, it would all be simply 'held for safekeeping'.

Jewellry can, by the way, be safely kept in a safe-deposit box in a bank. My mother's jewelry case is in my bank, and I think I pay something like £30 a year for it to be held there. She is long gone, but my bro and I have never 'divvied up' the contents, and anyway, we don't ourselves particularly want any valuable pieces hanging around in our houses!!!

I do definitely agree that you, with PoA have responsibility - and the power! - to insist that ALL your dad's estate and what happened to it is fully disclosed. You are 'in persona' as your mum herself, and your sisters must recognise this. Yes, get legal advice as necessary.

Do you suspect any of your sisters are 'helping themselves' to your dad's stuff/money etc etc??????

Then you'll need to think ahead anyway as to what is going to happen to your mum before she dies. Where does she currently live, and who is looking after her. If YOU, say, are housing her/looking after her, then YOU should get 'paid' out of your mum's money (including what her husband left her!), or, if no money, but, say, her house, then she should lend you her 'keep and care' out of the value of the house, and this will be a charge against it, to be paid out to you, when she herself dies.

It's absolutely essential that if YOU are doing the caring, YOU should get something NOW out of your mum's estate (or at the least, a charge upon it) and that it is NOT just divided equally between you and your sister's - as that is NOT FAIR (ie, you've done the caring, they get equal dibs of what she has!)

Another factor you must take account of is this - even if your mum is not in residential care now, at some point she may have to be, her care/nursing needs may demand it. For that reason (especially if she is already in residential care), she will have to pay her own fees until such time as her estate (total of savings and property) is down to £23,500.

IF your sisters have been helping themselves to what is now HERS (ie, left her by her husband), then that must stop immediately if only because if your mum goes into care, and she is below that £23,500 threshold, the council who will be asked to fund her will go through her finances with a toothcomb! If they find your sisters have taken money from her estate, the council will demand it back - it will be 'deprivation of assets'.
Lets be frank, your sister is being dishonest. If you know what account the money is in, then ask the bank manager to freeze the account immediately. Their first duty is to protect clients money.
If probate has been granted - and by now it must have been! - then ALL the monies in your father's estate should already be in your mother's name (administered by you as PoA), and the Land Registry should be informed for the change in ownership in any property your dad left your mum.

As BB says, this CANNOT legally be deferred, and definitely tell your father's bank and consult a lawyer immediately if your sister's don't hand ALL your dad's estate over to your mum.
Hi Elizabeth,

This is what the carers forum is for and I wish you nothing but love and hugs.

I'm in a similar situation where a family member wants to take money from my Dads estate for her own gain, despite not having the time of day for her Mum.

To put it simply, its NOT OK for your sisters to "look after" the things they have taken. Legally it is theft.

It's down to the relationship with your Sisters, but what they are doing is wrong and greedy and you need to stick up for yourself.

Just remember. You are number one! Even if it means confronting your sisters.