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No. of Recommendations: 2

here's a very short version.

Grandma nearing 90 year old has two "rats" living with her. These rats are two of her children more than 50 years old. One daughter with a history, including poss/ with intent, prostitution, ect. She has served time and is clear of all probabtion. Son, is a V Vet.. The other 4 grown children have productive "normal" lives. Several years ago, Grandma's checking/savings cash assets were locked up and changed to include dual signatures with my mom and/or another good daughter, This action was due to loads of money being spent up and more/less stolen by the rats. This was all shortly after the death of my grandfather in 2000. The money lost was close to 200g in a matter of months. Grandma knew she was in trouble so she was moved willingly back to her home state near other children. The rats stayed away for a good time but have returned in the last couple of years. Gramdma getting up in age really needed someone to stay with her. All was okay for a while but now seems as daughter is using again and was demanding money for this, that.. ect.. When she was cut off again all broke loose. She is now holding my granmda hostage in her own home, she has convienced grandma who is suffering from demensia that all of the family are out to get her money and put her in a crazy home. Grandma now won't see or speak to any of her 40 something other family members. When the officers are sent to her home she still says no.. "I think its' best that I just stay here with Rat #1 and #2". The officers DON'T ask her outside of the rats presence. A month or so back on a routine office visit her family Dr' was asked to admininster a capacity test. Grandma couldn't pass the test and the Dr. wrote a letter expressing such. However in this state in order to make the Dr's findings validated it has to go in front of a judge...the judge must agree and then appoint a guardian for grandma oh and a investigation by social services must also be conducted and they have 45 days to complete. The good kids sat on this inforamtion for a while no one really wanting to take their own mother to court. BUT now their hands have been forced. Rat 1 and 2 have somehow hired a lawyer- no doubt waving one of gramdma's bank statements as they have no money, no jobs of their own. They are trying to get grandma's funds released so they can access them. They say they have made a new will and new directions have been drawn up giving rat 2 power of attorney. The good kids have also retained a lawyer, but all is taking so much time. We now just wait for the courts to work hopeing and praying for grandma's safety.

I guess I wrote all this as a warning and for some feedback or any advice that any of you may have to offer.
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No. of Recommendations: 3
You are going to need a lawyer who specializes in elder abuse. The courts have seen this many times.

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No. of Recommendations: 1
You may want to post this on the Taking Care of Parents board, I think they've come up against this issue many times.
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No. of Recommendations: 5
At 90, Grandma probably can't stay by herself. Does she walk without assistance? Is she competent to sign a new will? I assume she doesn't drive. Alternative arrangements for living with the "good" kids?
Generally, it is best for an old person to remain in their own home as long as possible. It is difficult for them to learn new things. If moved to assisted living or a nursing home, she will decompensate quite quickly--can't find the light switch, wandering at night, all manner of problems. If Rat #2 is with her 24/7 to toilet her, fix her meals, etc. some compensation is in order, in addition to room and board. Especially if she is incontinent, wiping her butt every time she goes to the bathroom, and changing wet diapers promptly isn't a fun job. Are the rats performing these services? If she welcomed it, would another child move in to take care of her, the group agreeing on fair compensation? Check what assisted living or nursing homes in your area charge for comparable service, according to what her needs would be. To pay her children a comparable amount is fair if they are reliably providing the services.
This group has lived together for a number of years. They've worked out dynamics one way or another, and the situation may not be all black and white.
Before the rats are tossed out, there are some questions to ask:
Is Grandma physically abused? Are their bruises on her body? Bedsores? If so and you are filing legal complaints, take pictures.
Check the refrigerator. Is there nutritious food in the house? Who is doing the cooking? Is Grandma gaining or losing weight? If she is paying for the groceries but receiving nutrtious meals for herself, that's a fair exchange.
Is she in fact being taken care of 24/7? If there is always one rat there the arrangement may be pretty good as it is. However, it may be that care deteriorates when/if the rats get possession of the checkbook and even more so, the deed to the house.
Lots of things to think about.
Best wishes, Chris
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No.. Grandma shouldn't stay by herself.. but other than her eyesight, physically she is very healthy. Yes, she walks, does her own toileting, bathing ect. Doesn't drive- but never has. But like you have described taking her out of her own element she gets confused very quickly. The rats stay 24/7 because they don't work. The rats do cook or prepare something to eat for themselves and others they are allowing to come and go. SInce grandma looks okay I guess she is getting something to eat as well. For now ALL family members have been told to stay away, including even calling. Our law enforcement folks and told us that as well. We believe completely that the rats <at least one >is using crack on a very regular basis thus the need for the money. Rat two told someone that he caught rat 1 serviceing a couple of Johns at Grandma's house one night. Like I said in post one.. it was just scratching the surface.
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Oh, Cherie, I am so sorry you are having to deal with this, and I feel so bad for your grandma. I don't have any good advice, other than checking out the Taking Care of Parents board, but I wanted to give you sympathy. :-(

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My thoughts are with you during this difficult time, and I don't wish to cause you further alarm, but I would ponder these points:

1. If there are visitors to the house and drugs or prostitution is present, this can put your grandmother in GRAVE danger. If a 'visitor' believes she may have money or valuables, this would certainly give them a motive to come back later to rob or do worse damage. If drugs are being used, what would stop someone on a binge from causing her harm? Drug addicts are likely to commit crimes to support their habit.

2. A new will would most likely be invalidated by your grandmother's present medical condition. If it's been known for some time she suffers from dimentia, then anything signed by her after this diagnosis would unlikely hold up in court. (Unfortunately, it would take court action by one of the parties to bring this forth.)

I would use whatever resources I had available at my disposal to remove the adult children from her residence and bar them from returning. This would most likely take a restraining order. It would be imperative for your grandmother to be evaluated away from the children, so they cannot influence the findings. If you can figure out a way to drug-test the one you think is using, I would do that as well; this would certainly give you more ammunition if necessary.

Can you hire a neighbor or private detective to watch her house for a week or so, observing activities from outside, while taking notes and/or photos? License plate numbers can be tracked to find out what kind of people are frequenting the premises. This is the kind of information you'll need to get law enforcement involved. The more ammo the better, if helping your grandmother is the ultimate goal.

My guess is the the adult children will use her for as long as they can, then discard her. (I don't say this lightly, but can't say it any nicer.)

I second the advice to seek the input of an elder-law attorney; he or she can enlighten you to what rights she has that may be compromised right now. Don't wait until something catastrophic happens... you won't be able to change the past, but you can do something now to protect her present and future.

MadamHusker 1

~ Not unfamiliar with family problems.
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