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How do I protect my mother's financial assets from irresponsible or abusive relatives?



Contacting the bank sounds like a good idea. Your mother may need to be present, as it is her account. You may want to be added to her accounts or she can appoint you as her "Power of Attorney".



Many states have laws in place to protect their senior residents. Elder financial abuse and exploitation are not taken lightly, and often come with higher criminal penalties. If there is imminent danger to your mother, 911 is always the first course of action. Theft of any kind should be reported to law enforcement. You may find helpful information through your state's Adult Protective Services, and any local or state social services agencies. Your state should also have an elder abuse hotline that you can find through the National Center on Elder Abuse (


The bank should be made aware of this situation ASAP, whether it is through the authorities or through you. Just please know that the bank will probably not speak with you about much detail unless your name is on the account or your mother designated you as her agent.


As I understand conservatorships, they are put in place via a court venue when a person is incompatent for one reason or another and when families are fighting over assests, is this true>


 I heard that most court appointed conservatorships are not regulated by the state or the federal government.   Who is the watchdog for conservators?  Are conservators subject to outside independant audits? How can we be sure these conservators are managing the assests of an incapacited person correctly and making decisions with that are in that persons best interest?  


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