What to do about my elderly mother’s assets?

My father died a few years ago and had a bank account that had my sister’s name on it. My mothers SS check goes into this account and my sister does not have power of attorney. Do I have any legal rights to this account? Also, I live with my mother and take care of her and her property currently has timber that needs to be cut. Can I legally have that done without my sister’s consent?

Asked on September 22, 2014 under Estate Planning, Alabama

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

What you are trying to do here is get things in order and that is great.  First, I can not imagine that the SS check goes in to an acount that does not have your Mother on it.  Please double check.  It should be in her name.  If it is an account that has your Sister on it to as a joint account holder then the money left in there will go to her at the time of your Mother's death.  If you need to take care of your Mother's assets then there are a few ways.  If your Mother is with it then she can sign a power of Attorney form for you to take care of things.  If not then you need to ask the court to appoint a conservator or guardian.  i would speak with a lawyer.  Good luck.  


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