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Roger, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 30909
Experience:  BV Rated by Martindale-Hubbell; SuperLawyer rating by Thompson-Reuters
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My MIL needs help managing her finances. It is hard to make

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My MIL needs help managing her finances. It is hard to make her ends meet and she has needed us to give her money. After getting a glimpse of her cash flow when she asked me to help her fill out aid/assistance and tax rebate form, we realized that she would need less dollars from us if her finances were managed more appropriately. (We still have a kid in college, and contributing to her finances every month is not always easy.) We told her that if we were going to continue giving her money, we needed to be privy to the cash flow and help manage that. She did not want to do this so we backed off and also stopped giving her money. She is now behind and came to us once again. She has agreed to a plan to where we would set up a separate bill paying account that we would manage. The idea is her SSI check would get distributed between the two. We identified an amount that would go into her current checking, designated for just groceries, incidentals, and cash, for her to manage as we see fit. The other account we would manage to pay bills and expenses. We would still have to supplement that account, but at a level much more feasible for us. MIL was amenable to this arrangement. When I went to the bank to see if that could be set up, they said yes, but my husband would need financial POA. MIL at first agreed to this, but then decided she doesn't want to turn over POA. She is willing to give us the bill money, put it in one of our accounts (I would set a separate one for this) and have us pay the bills. My concern is that this arrangement would leave us vulnerable. What if down the road other family members questioned the arrangement or accused us of taking her money. My thoughts are we should at least draft a letter of agreement that we and MIL sign, defining this arrangement. Is that adequate? Are other arrangements possible?
Hi - my name is XXXXX XXXXX I'm a litigation attorney. Thanks for your question.

As long as your mother in law is mentally competent, you can do this. It really sounds like a power of attorney would work well for you here. You could recite the language you want for this arrangement.

A local attorney can help you get this done relatively cheap. Or you can use a form online, but you'd need to add your specific language to address the matters you mentioned below.
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Customer: replied 3 years ago.
she is mentally competent, that is why she is refusing the POA. will this letter work to give me documentation that she is agreeing to this? should we have it notarized?

Letter of Agreement

I agree to the following arrangement for assistance with the management of my financial affairs.

After the deposit of my monthly SSI check, I will write a check in the amount of $xxxx.00 to Anthony xxx.

This will be deposited into a new checking account, opened in the name of Anthony. and Catherine xxx This account is separate from their current checking and savings accounts and is intended solely for the management of the expenses listed below.

On the twentieth of each month, my son or daughter in law will deposit $xxx into my current checking account to cover the equity payment. They will pay the remaining expenses listed, and also supplement the account on a monthly basis with an amount up to $155.00. They will manage the account so that funds accumulate for those expenses that are paid quarterly and annually.

This agreement will be reviewed annually from the date the letter is signed, or when there is a significant change in either my income or expenses, or a significant reduction in my son or daughter in law's incomes.

(current income and her expenses excluding groceries then listed)

Signed this date of:_________________

Hi - sorry for the delay.

If she's competent and is willing to agree to this, then you can enter into a contract such as the one above. You certainly should have this notarized.