I was my mother's POA. She died this May. I am very sorry for your loss.
Before she died, she sold her house and she told me to put the money in a joint account with her and I. Was she giving you half? Perhaps a gift because you had been taking care of her? Or was the joint nature only so you could write checks on the account? Also, was that account pre-existing as a joint?
She also withdrew money from 2 annuities and asked me to put that money into our joint account. So, if she had checks from the annuity account, who signed them? She? Or did you "as POA for Mom".
She moved down with me 2 years ago, my husband and I built her a little home and we also had to fix up her old house because my sister's son rented it and tore it up. Sounds like you put a lot of time, expense of your own, and effort and love into your mom's last years.
Two of my sisters didn't come to see her for over a year, until they found out she had breast cancer.
Now they are trying to sue me because they say I illegally transferred money from mom's account to mine for financial gain. This is not what happened but mom is gone. How can I prove it. First, the burden is on them to prove this - not on you. Second, your mom signed a POA which means generally that one the face of things, you were allowed to move her moneys on her behalf. Third, if you used YOUR money for some things, you would be entitled as POA of Mom, to pay back her lender, you. You could also use those funds for her other bills.
I took her to 7 weeks of M - F radiation treatments, I was the one taking care of her and seeing that she was safe and secure. She told me she did not want them to get much - she asked that I move the money. It may have been more prudent for her to explain that, perhaps in her Will, or to otherwise document that that was her intention and why... so she would not have left the 3 of you to fight.
It was not my idea. Yes, I understand. Did you document her via signing, video, something, where she explains her desires and reasons?
I have witnesses that she told this to Great, that can help - alot!
but my sisters are terrible and are very much in debt and have already spent the money they got now they want mine. Do I have a leg to stand on? Of course. First, figure out Where all your mom's money went and get your receipts in order of what you spent it on. If it was on fixing her house, you can then show that the $20k that went from her account (post sale of house) to yours was in re-payment of that loan she had from you to fix the house, to sell the house. If her money was used to build a second house in your name, that she would live in for the rest of her days rent free, then show that - show the costs on building the home that came from you, and the fair market rental value of what she was to get... 2 years of a rental home, let's save the FMV was $1000/mo, then that would be $48000 she got in-kind, by being able to live in your property rent free. In exchange, she took (hopefully) $48k, given to you that you used to build the home, that she would then live in rent free because she'd already paid you the $48k in advance.
Etc. etc. Start doing your numbers - you'd be surprised that you may be quite close to showing you got nothing more than what you gave.
Optional Information: Country relating to Question: United StatesState (if USA): IndianaWhat have you tried so far?: I have just now found an attorney and have an appointment with him next week. Great!
I did everything my mom asked. Did it ever dawn on you, given what you new about your sisters, that of course they'd b*tch about it later? It is ALWAYS better to document, document, document to protect yourself.
When she moved the money, I didn't even use my POA. She signed everything. Ah! Excellent. That may show that anything that became legally yours was a gift. Her cancer doctor is writing a letter stating that she was of sound mind and he saw her every day for 7 weeks. Even more excellent. I think you are on good footing here. You can't stop sisters for suing, anyone can sue, but their attorney will be hard pressed to take the case once he sees her signature and the doctor's medical opinion as to her sound mind.
I hope this helps! My goal is to provide you with excellent and accurate service – if you feel you have gotten anything less, please reply back, I am happy to address follow-up questions. Kindly rate me "excellent" when you are done. I look forward to assisting you in the future, should you have legal questions.
She did have a document signed by her that was notarized stating that she asked me to put the house money in a separate account that would not go into her trust and also that she asked me to take money from two annuities and put that into the separate account so that it would not be part of the trust. I have that document also. I have notarized statements from several people that she told them the same thing. She said since no one helped her move or fix the house but me and my husband, she did not want any of the other girls to have money from the house. One of the sisters who is actually the mastermind of all of this, was actually taken out of the trust except for $1000 but the attorney doing the trust did not put the annuities into the trust as requested so she was still listed as a beneficiary. She actually received more than she was supposed to get. They all hurt mom very much and if you knew her, you would understand that she didn't take kindly to that. She knew how much work my husband and I put in and she rewarded us for it. Now they are saying they want to put liens on all my personal property.
DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.
The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).