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 Social Security and Power of Attorney 
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Joined: Wed Feb 10, 2010 1:26 pm
Posts: 56
Location: NC
Post Social Security and Power of Attorney
I just had a need to contact Social Security. I was told that they do not recognize a POA. In the recent past when I have called my husband has been able to take the phone and verify permission for info to be given to me. At this point he can still do this, but I know it's just a matter of time.

Anyone else had to deal with this issue? I know with a Designated Payee a record of all spending must be kept and they expect that any sum not spent on the individual's upkeep be put into a savings account. We need that money for my daughter and I to live on as well. I will be going to the office on Friday(after Hurricane Earl tomorrow) Any thoughts or recommendations?

Thanks
Sandilee


Wed Sep 01, 2010 10:22 pm
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Joined: Fri Aug 11, 2006 1:46 pm
Posts: 4811
Location: SF Bay Area (Northern CA)
Post Re: Social Security and Power of Attorney
Perhaps you can take in with you a summary thus far of how much has been received and what your LO's expenses are and what your expenses are. And take in any past years' reports you may've prepared.


Wed Sep 01, 2010 10:34 pm
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Joined: Mon Jun 21, 2010 2:24 pm
Posts: 32
Post Re: Social Security and Power of Attorney
Hi Sandilee, I just had this happen to me last week. My husband had lost his last months social security check. He hid his wallet again!! We had looked for it for over 2 weeks. He ended up in a short term facility for dementia patients because of delusional behavior, among other things. I was tying to get the S.S. check replaced. I had called the Social Security Adm the day before and they told me the same thing they told you, but also what I needed to do. Anyway, I got a letter from the doctor office, stating that the doctor believed that my husband was not able to manage his financial affairs. The Dr. named me as the person to handle the affairs.(I was named as his representative for S.S.) I took this and had to show my ID plus our marriage license and they made the request for the check to be replaced. While I was there I requested to have his payments be made by direct deposit rather than a paper check. This resulted in another form having to be filled out by the Drs office and then back to S.S. office. Fortunately, we live in a small town, so it wasnt far, nor did I have to wait long at either office. But I am now waiting for the check to hit the bank account. But you might go ahead and call the Dr office and ask if they can type you up one of these letters. Might save you a trip back and forth, (or many trips)..BY the way, if you go this route, ask if you can keep the original letter and form. They just fax them then shred them. I thought it might come in handy later also.(And it already has!!) Hope this helps.


Thu Sep 02, 2010 2:44 am
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Joined: Mon Jun 21, 2010 2:24 pm
Posts: 32
Post Re: Social Security and Power of Attorney
Hi again, Sandilee, Just had another thought. While your husband is still able, HE can make you a representative of his with Social Security. Had mine not been in the facility, he could have done this for me. Of course, if yours is like mine, he doesnt want to give up any control, so the Drs letter may be the best bet anyway. Isnt our legal system something? I have a DPOA for financial affairs plus a DPOA for medical, but our own government doesnt recognize either one as far as Social Security goes. GO FIGURE!!


Thu Sep 02, 2010 2:56 am
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Joined: Fri Jan 15, 2010 9:33 pm
Posts: 3377
Location: Vermont
Post Re: Social Security and Power of Attorney
Interesting how our LOs tried to protect themselves for the future by writing POAs, yet SS is not the only entity that does not recognize POAs. The VA is the same way. Some state depts. of transportation, same thing.
Luckily my dad's ss check was always made by direct deposit, so that helped. Last summer I went to our local ss office with the original POA and a letter that I'd had my dad sign asking that all his affairs be taken care of by me, with an original signature of his and a current date on the letter. They futzed around and asked a lot of questions, but in the end the guy was convinced I wasn't a ripoff artist. But it really did help that I wasn't trying to get a paper check or get it mailed elsewhere. It still goes into the same checking account in my dad's town, and I bank by mail most of the time.
I hope you get it to work out without too much more hassle. Lynn

_________________
Lynn, daughter of 89 year old dad dx with possiblity of LBD, CBD, PSP, FTD, ALS, Vascular Dementia, AD, etc., died Nov. 30, 2010 after living in ALF for 18 months.


Thu Sep 02, 2010 9:59 am
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Joined: Wed Dec 30, 2009 1:46 pm
Posts: 3213
Location: WA
Post Re: Social Security and Power of Attorney
My husband's IRA account doesn't accept POA, either.

_________________
Pat [68] married to Derek [84] for 38 years; husband dx PDD/LBD 2005, probably began 2002 or earlier; late stage and in a SNF as of January 2011. Hospitalized 11/2/2013 and discharged to home Hospice. Passed away at home on 11/9/2013.


Thu Sep 02, 2010 10:31 am
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Joined: Fri Jan 15, 2010 9:33 pm
Posts: 3377
Location: Vermont
Post Re: Social Security and Power of Attorney
Here's another big industry that does not recognize POAs - the insurance industry. Last summer I went through all my dad's important paperwork, contacted all the insurance cos. where any changes needed to be made, and wrote letters for my dad. I explained them to him, he signed them, and I sent them in. Unless the words "insurance companies" or "life insurance companies" specifically are written in the POA, which they usually are not, ins. cos. will NOT recognize POAs. My dad was still paying for a catastrophic health policy for my mother who'd been dead for 12 years! And I couldn't get them to take her name off the joint policy without a death certificate AND a letter from my dad.
So, get things changed before your LO gets any worse off. Lynn

_________________
Lynn, daughter of 89 year old dad dx with possiblity of LBD, CBD, PSP, FTD, ALS, Vascular Dementia, AD, etc., died Nov. 30, 2010 after living in ALF for 18 months.


Thu Sep 02, 2010 10:52 am
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Joined: Wed Dec 30, 2009 1:46 pm
Posts: 3213
Location: WA
Post Re: Social Security and Power of Attorney
You know, I think I would contact the state attorney general about things like that. It may not help and--heaven knows!--you've got enough to do but it can't hurt. A lot of these companies seem to have a philosophy of 'privacy' that's more about them keeping your assets than about securing your privacy.

_________________
Pat [68] married to Derek [84] for 38 years; husband dx PDD/LBD 2005, probably began 2002 or earlier; late stage and in a SNF as of January 2011. Hospitalized 11/2/2013 and discharged to home Hospice. Passed away at home on 11/9/2013.


Thu Sep 02, 2010 11:36 am
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Joined: Fri Jan 15, 2010 9:33 pm
Posts: 3377
Location: Vermont
Post Re: Social Security and Power of Attorney
I think the insurance thing, especially with life insurance, is that if people could change beneficiaries on someone else's policy easily there might be a lot of abuse. When I made changes with various insurance things I was very careful to think about what my dad wanted had he been of sound mind when he made some rather "interesting" choices, or failed to make, like paying for insurance on a joint policy for my mom for 12 years after her death. Looking back on things, if I'd had a clue that he had dementia I would have stepped in and offered to help him way before I did. But I thought he was ok handling his bill paying, etc. and didn't want to butt into his life if everything was going ok, which it appeared to be until last year.

_________________
Lynn, daughter of 89 year old dad dx with possiblity of LBD, CBD, PSP, FTD, ALS, Vascular Dementia, AD, etc., died Nov. 30, 2010 after living in ALF for 18 months.


Thu Sep 02, 2010 12:58 pm
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Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 10:32 am
Posts: 215
Location: Kalispell, MT
Post Re: Social Security and Power of Attorney
This is pretty scary. POA not recognized by feds? Who knew?
My husband has a POA and has signed a VA poa/living will.

SS-whew!-- info at http://www.ssa.gov/pubs/10076.html#helping

Apparently you have to be named a "representative payee" by SS, and the funds must go into a non-joint account, gotta file a yearly report, blah, blah. Most people probably just continue to receive electronic payments into a joint account. Is there a red flag somewhere?


Thu Sep 02, 2010 1:29 pm
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Joined: Fri Jan 15, 2010 9:33 pm
Posts: 3377
Location: Vermont
Post Re: Social Security and Power of Attorney
I don't know what the bureaucratic terminology was in my dad's case, but I just told them to keep depositing the money into our joint account but any IRS forms, etc. should be forwarded to me. So far, so good, and it's been a year. The only strange thing that happened is that now his ss deposit is made about the 2nd or 3rd of the month instead of the last day of the previous month. The guy explained it to me but I don't remember what the reasoning was, but at least I was forewarned that that would happen. I just have to go on line twice to see his deposits now instead of everything coming into his account all at once.

_________________
Lynn, daughter of 89 year old dad dx with possiblity of LBD, CBD, PSP, FTD, ALS, Vascular Dementia, AD, etc., died Nov. 30, 2010 after living in ALF for 18 months.


Thu Sep 02, 2010 2:08 pm
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Joined: Wed Feb 10, 2010 1:26 pm
Posts: 56
Location: NC
Post Re: Social Security and Power of Attorney
Thanks everyone...
I want to really avoid being named representative payee. His SS is direct Deposit, so that one's not a problem. It's our child's that I had a question about. This is Directly deposited as well but they wouldn't even answer a question. I'm calling again in the morn, and possibly taking him to the office if necessary.

But I really thought this was an important piece of info others could use...


Thu Sep 02, 2010 8:55 pm
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Joined: Sat Jan 03, 2009 2:59 pm
Posts: 1978
Post Re: Social Security and Power of Attorney
Sandilee,
I had an under age child that recieved SS benefits, and if I can help let me know!

_________________
Irene Selak


Fri Sep 03, 2010 7:24 am
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Joined: Mon Mar 08, 2010 9:32 pm
Posts: 118
Location: Dumfries Va
Post Re: Social Security and Power of Attorney
When my mother passed away I had the same problem with AARP and United Health Care. They wanted proof that I was the POA. When I sent them a copy they said the didn't recognize it! However, they recognized that I was the designated Administrator of the estate when they wanted to settle a financial matter. Of course I was designated the Admin in the POA! Social Securtiy was no problem but she was receivng her own SS anyway. The Veterans Affairs in Roanoke VA was great. They realy helped me settle her account with no problem.


Fri Sep 03, 2010 7:59 am
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Joined: Wed Dec 30, 2009 1:46 pm
Posts: 3213
Location: WA
Post Re: Social Security and Power of Attorney
Last year when we sold our house I had the same problem. The title office would NOT accept the general POA I had so my husband had to sign the papers. It didn't seem to matter to them that he was cognitively impaired as long as his signature was on the papers [at least he was able to manage a scrawl]. I had felt so confident that we had covered all the bases. Others I've spoken with have mentioned that their POA was not accepted in real estate transactions.

_________________
Pat [68] married to Derek [84] for 38 years; husband dx PDD/LBD 2005, probably began 2002 or earlier; late stage and in a SNF as of January 2011. Hospitalized 11/2/2013 and discharged to home Hospice. Passed away at home on 11/9/2013.


Fri Sep 03, 2010 9:48 am
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