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What a Mess...

February 22nd, 2021 at 05:48 pm

My mother's father passed away on Saturday, after a long battle with cancer.  He was 91 years old, lived a full life, and was ready to go.  My grandmother is still alive, but has advanced Alzheimer's.  I would be very surprised if she lived through the end of this year.  I did/do not have a very close relationship with them, but am hurting for my mother.  They retired to Las Vegas 25 years ago, and as they aged/became ill, my mother was going out to visit them 3-4 times per year.  Unfortunately, with the pandemic hitting, she has not been able to visit since February of 2020.  Thankfully, she was able to speak to him one last time on Friday to say goodbye.

We had already been planning to make a trip to Vegas in April to clean out his apartment (my mother's second vaccine dose is this weekend, so she will be fully vaccinated mid-March).  I am also elgiible based on the underlying conditions in our state, and as of right now my first dose is the week before we are booked to go.  A new vaccine site is opening in the next city over though, and so I am hoping I can reschedule for an earlier date so I will also be fully vaccinated by the time we have to travel.  I'm very much not thrilled about this trip overall, but it's unfortunately necessary.  

The mess part is that neither of my grandparents were at all technologically savvy, did not use the internet at all, and so none of their accounts etc are managed online.  My mother and her sister also do not seem to have the necessary documents to settle their estate, so I am getting thrown in to handle all of this.  We have a POA for my grandfather, but for my grandmother, we only seem to have a healthcare POA.  75% of the papers are still at the nursing home that my grandfather has lived in for the past few weeks (my grandmother has been there for 4.5 years), so we need the manager of the home to send them to us this week to sort through.  My mother's sister is who is technically named on the POA, but she is very emotional and disorganized in the best of times.  So I told my mother to have the docs sent to us, and I will sort them out and figure out what they need to do.

All of this renewed my determination to not go through when my mother passes.  She's much more technologically savvy, and I have all of her passwords to everything/am already a signer on her bank account.  I mentioned to her this morning that I think we should get POAs in place now that way they're handled long before they're needed.  In our state, an attorney does not need to draw them up, they just need to be notarized.  She agreed, and will name my sister and I POA.  I'm then going to start a list of all of her financial info in a Google doc to share with my brother and sister, and will update as she makes changes.  That way we don't have to go looking all over the place for the info.  I'd rather create the list while she can still give us info.  

Anything left over after my grandfather's estate has been settled will go into my grandmother's account (after being married for 70+ years, they still had separate bank accounts ha).  My mother and her sisters all have bonds that my grandfather purchased for them, which should be around $20k.  He also purchased bonds for my brother in the amount of about $1k.  My mother has said that she will give my sister and I $1k each from her bonds to make it equal.  I am not expecting anything more from his estate.  I've made a tentative plan for the $1k (it'll be split between savings, some upcoming educational expenses, and some debt payoff).  

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