does my mother in laws power of attorney give her rights to my child/taxes?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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does my mother in laws power of attorney give her rights to my child/taxes?

My husband is in jail awaiting sentencing for endangering me and my child. in jail
he just gave his mother my mother in law a general power of attorney. We filed
taxes earlier as joint and she took this POA to HR Block and they gave her all of
our documents to include all of my personal information, bank accounts, and
child information. I have 3 children and one on the way. She is also claiming that
if I drop my daughter off for someone to babysit that she will come and take her.
we have not filed for divorce. what rights do I have? does she even have the
rights to do all of this?

Asked on March 15, 2018 under Estate Planning, Texas


B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

All that your husband could do with a POA is convey his rights.  However, your mother-in-law cannot trump your rights to your children without a court order.  However, it seems like some people may be trying to give more authority to her than what was conveyed with this power of attorney.  
To remedy the can do a couple of different things.  
One, is you can go seek a protective order which prohibits your husband (and anyone designated by him) from being around your children.  An order will always trump a POA. Your local District Attorney's Office can help you for free with this application.
The best option will be to file for divorce and get restraing order or protective order.  You can also ask that you be the parent granted the exclusive right to make decisions for your children or your financial affairs.  This will competely cut off any ability by your husband to try to delegate rights, because the order will trump any of his decisions.
If you cannot afford an attorney, get in touch quickly with a legal aid or legal non-profit group in your area.  Usually, the district clerk will keep a list of such resources on hand.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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