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I'm Lucy, and I'd be happy to answer your questions today. I'm sorry to hear about your situation.
To become a power of attorney, it's only necessary that the person sign documentation giving the other person authority to seek decisions. I tend to question how a person who cannot read would know the contents of a POA document - that might be something to ask your friend about. See if you can read it yourself and determine what the son has the power to do. Often, POAs are only for making certain types of decisions. There isn't any sort of certification process before a person can be named POA, and a POA isn't the same as a caretaker. He usually wouldn't be required to take her to the doctor, but he should be hiring a caretaker for her if she needs one.
Your friend also should be able to still access her own bank accounts, unless she's been declared mentally incompetent by the courts. So, she might be able to hire someone on her own.
With that said, a POA can be revoked at any time. Your friend can sign a new document, removing the son's authority to make decisions. Then you friend would be free to set a new POA, someone who would have her best interests at heart. If your friend isn't mentally able to sign that type of documentation, and her son is not acting in her best interests, it may be possible to file a lawsuit against the son to have the POA revoked.
These types of cases can be tricky, especially if you don't have a legal background. Courts typically don't have forms available online that you can fill out. So if you wind up wanting to go to court, it's a good idea to talk to a local attorney who can draft the Complaint for you.
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