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Does a cosigner to an account of an elderly have the right to hand over checkbooks, debit cards to 1 sibling and not inform POA?

Corpus Christi, TX |

Two siblings are against 3 other siblings and have closed out surviving mother's Savings account and have withdrawn a CD that is an inheritance for all 5 siblings. They never infomed the POA and now the bank will not disclose any information to the POA! The POA needs all of Mom's assests back into account to pay for Mother's debts and nursing home. HELP, worried daughter in TX.

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Attorney answers 4


First, there is no inheritance since mom is still alive!

Second, I would retain an attorney immediately. As you have learned sometimes a POA is ignored because they can be revoked at anytime.

I would look on this website and on the State Bar of Texas website for an attorney that specializes in elder law or probate law. You have a complex problem that needs legal assistance immediately. You might need to get in front of a judge pronto!


I agree with Attorney Brochstein. I think you may have a real problem on your hands. The POA gives you power to act on your mother's behalf. But it does not undo bad arrangements she had previously set up. It sounds like everything was jointly held with the other siblings. One of the negatives of joint property arrangements is that ANY joint tenant can usually jump in and grab funds. This is a horrible way to set things up and it leads to all kinds of situations like you are dealing with, right now.

Whether or not a judge would allow them to KEEP the funds, under the circumstances, depends on the judge. You may also find that their grabbing the funds will prevent your mother from qualifying for Medicaid benefits.

It is not clear what your siblings' intentions were/are or whether they will cooperate with you in paying for your mother's care. If they do not, you have no chance of recovering the funds without retaining a good lawyer. I would take the first step and speak with a lawyer right away.

Best of luck to you and your mother!

James Frederick

***Please be sure to mark if you find the answer "helpful" or a "best" answer. Thank you! I hope this helps. ***************************************** LEGAL DISCLAIMER I am licensed to practice law in the State of Michigan and have offices in Wayne and Ingham Counties. My practice is focused in the areas of estate planning and probate administration. I am ethically required to state that the above answer does not create an attorney/client relationship. These responses should be considered general legal education and are intended to provide general information about the question asked. Frequently, the question does not include important facts that, if known, could significantly change the answer. Information provided on this site should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed attorney that practices in your state. The law changes frequently and varies from state to state. If I refer to your state's laws, you should not rely on what I say; I just did a quick Internet search and found something that looked relevant that I hoped you would find helpful. You should verify and confirm any information provided with an attorney licensed in your state. I hope you our answer helpful!


There are different types of POA. Do you know exactly what type of POA you are talking about?

This advice being provided in no way represents the formation of a lawyer client relationship. This is advice only based on limited information. The advice seeker should seek an in-person meeting with a qualified attorney to discuss his or her issue.

Fran Brochstein

Fran Brochstein


Good answer - I wish I'd thought of it! Have a good day!


I agree with the other answers. You should consult an estate planning and probate attorney. A letter from an attorney on behalf of the POA may get the bank to cooperate in providing information. If the bank still refuses to cooperate, or even if they do and you find that your siblings have taken all the funds, to protect the resources your Mom has remaining, it may be necessary to initiate a guardianship proceeding. This would be appropriate if she does not have the capacity to manage her own financial affairs. It sounds like your Mom either gave away funds she needs for her care or is being financially exploited. Either way, she may need protection which is generally obtained through a guardianship.

You could also consider contacting Adult Protective Services if you feel exploitation or abuse has taken place.

This answer contains general information. None of the information contained in this communication is intended as legal advice. You should neither act nor refrain from acting based on information obtained from the exchange of messages on this website. None of the information contained in this answer is privileged or confidential. You should retain an attorney to provide legal advice regarding this issue. Newill Law Firm provides estate planning and probate services. Call (210) 383-0546 for a FREE initial consultation.

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