What can I do if my brother is taking financial advantage of my elderly mother?

UPDATED: Sep 11, 2014

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What can I do if my brother is taking financial advantage of my elderly mother?

My mother sold her home. Profit made. My brother has access to her finances and is not providing me information on where her money is. I checked her credit report and it appears that 4 accounts are in collections. She has no knowledge of this. A cable TV account was opened under her first name and maiden name at his residence. Collection now with a past due amount of $1100. Brother is not returning my calls. I need answers

Asked on September 11, 2014 under Estate Planning, California


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

If your mother is mentally competent, all you can do is let her know what's happening--then it's up to her to act (or not; people can let themselves be taken advantage of by friends or family). If she's not mentally competent, or you fear she's not mentally competent, you need to have a court appoint a guardian for her to look after her interests; one of the things the guardian can do is look at what your brother has been doing with her money. Speak with an elder law attorney about seeking to have a guardian appointed, if you fear your mother is not competent to look after her own interests.

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