Q: How legal is it for one party to illegally remove an elderly person from a safe home with Power Of Attorney over them?
Boyfriend has legal POA and I was taking care of elderly when relative illegally removed him just to use his SSI checks.
A: Speaking generally, if a person holds a power of attorney over an individual, they owe that individual a duty of care to perform acts in that individual's best interest. When other people feel they are not fulfilling that duty there are several options for recourse:
1. If the individual is competent he or she could revoke the power of attorney and sign a new one to appoint a new agent.
2. An interested party can file a "protective proceeding" in the local probate court and ask the court to appoint someone to manage the individual's affairs.
3. An interested party can call DHR or the local police if they believe there is dangerous or abusive behavior (which can include financial abuse).
There are many factors to consider in these types of cases and the above is intended only as a general overview and not specific advice for anyone's particular situation. It is always a good idea to consult with an attorney should you have more specific questions or need advice about how to proceed.
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