What to do if my husband is in a group home but my uncle has a POA with forged signatures and is gutting his pension and social security?

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What to do if my husband is in a group home but my uncle has a POA with forged signatures and is gutting his pension and social security?

My husband and I separated and all of his accounts have been taken over by my uncle. My uncle lives on a golf course and my husband is in a group home. I have filed for divorce but cannot serve a subpoena, the POA refuses to accept it. I now want to apply for conservatorship. He will not reveal the address to me or my divorce lawyer. Do I try to invalidate the POA or do I apply for his conservatorship?

Asked on October 2, 2012 under Estate Planning, Louisiana

Answers:

Catherine Blackburn / Blackburn Law Firm

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

This certainly sounds very shady.  Of course, using forged signatures is illegal.  Florida has statutes covering powers of attorney and they provide a means to challenge the actions of your uncle.  There are also common law means of suing a person who is taking advantage of another.

I don't know why your husband is in a group home.  If he lacks capacity, you can start a guardianship (conversatorship) proceeding.  This can happen whether he has a power of attorney or not.  In Florida, powers of attorney are immediately suspended when someone files for a guardianship.  The court can reinstate the power of attorney, but it is automatically suspended if a guardianship is filed.

So, you have several options. Filing for a conservatorship is quicker and more effective than suing the power of attorney.  You can also call the criminal authorities.  If your uncle is basically stealing your husband's assets, you can call the police.  You can also call the adult protective authorities of your state.

I suggest you take some action immediately to minimize the harm to your husband.


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