When a child makes the determination to become a caregiver for his or her parent, the child is generally taking on a large amount of responsibility in terms of the type of care the parent requires. Many times in a child-parent care giving situation, the child who is acting as the caregiver is granted power of attorney for the parent.
The delegation of authority for a power of attorney in Florida can include various levels of responsibility, but typically provides the child with access to the parent's money and the authority to spend the money as necessary for the health and well-being of the parent. If the parent's money is not spent within the perimeters of the power of attorney, the child assigned to the power of attorney may face consequences of power of attorney abuse.
An adult woman undertook the responsibility of acting as a caregiver for her elderly parent and as part of her caregiver role she had control of the parent's finances. Allegations surfaced that the woman misappropriated the parent's finances and she faces legal consequences for power of attorney abuse in probate court and criminal court.
The allegations of financial misappropriation came after it was suspected the woman spent her elderly parent's money on her own personal items. It was alleged that the woman spent money on her own spa appointments and purses. It total, the woman allegedly misappropriated an estimated $153,000. The misappropriated money may not only be an abuse of the power of attorney designation, but may also affect the potential inheritance for her siblings.
Source: Pioneer Press, "Maple Grove council member stole money from ailing father, charges say," David Hanners, Jan. 29, 2013