How to handle
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|Fri, 09-27-2013 - 11:05am|
My DH's uncle and aunt lost their only child in an accident a few years ago. They are quite elderly and are very wealthy. My DH and I absolutely cannot take on overseeing their care as we already have our hands full with his parents and my parents and our grandchild - not too mention our jobs (I have 4). So there is a man, who was an acquaintenance of their son and who is a neighbor to all of us, who has stepped in and has been helping them. They have added him to their checking account and given him POA for financial and medical reasons. His spending is supposedly overseen by their lawyer. Personally, I have no problem with this. This is who they have choosen to handle their affairs and I respect that.
The problem comes in with my mother-in-law. The home health workers visit both the homes (aunt/uncle and in-laws) three times a week. The home health workers have told my MIL that she needs to report this man to their lawyer. They believe he is just trying to exploit them financially. The home health workers have told her over and over again that they see this all the time and they can spot folks like him. Aunt/uncle have changed their will to include him. I am also fine with that. I don't want nor do I need their estate. The home health workers feel that his motives are less than ethical and he should be reported and have told my MIL this. Now she's all upset and wants to call their lawyer. This will only cause a rift in the family and at their ages, I just don't see the point in all of this. I have told my MIL this and so has my DH.
I do have huge concerns about the home health care people discussing this with MIL. It is upsetting her and she's not sleeping. She is in poor health and does not need this stress. Another concern I have with the home health care people discussing this, I believe it is a violation of aunt/uncle's HIPPA rights. And if they are discussing things of this nature with MIL, who are they discussing MIL with? Certainly not their son, who is the Power of Attorney for financial and health reasons. We've never heard the first word from them. There are times they leave instructions with MIL to call doctor if something happens but they never tell DH this. MIL loves her home health workers and I do believe we could have much worse so don't really want to have them reassigned.
First question, am I taking the acquaintenances actions too lightly? Should we call the aunt/uncle's attorney and risk alienating them from the only remaining family they have? One of us does check in on them every few days but we honestly can't handle an estate this size and we can't take on the responsibility of overseeing another person's health care.
Second question, should we report the home health workers for HIPPA violations?
Thanks for your thoughts and input. My husband is an only child and basically so am I - we truly have our hands full.