I have a question but also I must elaborate on the circumstances present in this post. I live in the state of Wisconsin and recently we have noticed my 82 year old grandmother suffering from symptoms of dementia. she is often forgetful and is often repeating herself. We have contacted the Social Services of the county to help in assessing whether my grandmother needs in-home care or if she is able to live independently. The doctors determination was that grandma was not able to live alone anymore and it was suggested that we as the family move her in with one of the family members to take care of her. My mother was went to court and was appointed as her guardian. However; since that time the human services department has been trying to court order my grandmother to be "forced" to move to a local CBRF center. My grandmother lives with my sister and is well taken care of, the county department believes that she is in an unstable environment, which is totally untrue, we provide the best care for my grandmother and love her very much, we all are responsible and hard-working and supportive family members. for whatever reasons they want her to move to the CBRF we do not know, we think that her rights are being violated and she should not be forced to move there simply to summarily dismiss her entire case so that it saves them(the department) paperwork and time. I feel that she is being pushed aside so that her care does not have to be dealt with. my question is, can she be forced to move there if proper care is being maintained and the guardian (my mother) refuses that decision to place her in a CMO? Can this be fought to help keep my grandmother with her loving family instead of be forced to go to a place she herself does not want to go? Should an elder attorney be hired by my family to help stop this agency from taking my grandma from our loving home?
I'm not sure what they consider an "unstable home." If they go to the judge to have your grandmother moved to a home, they'll have to have some kind of proof in order to move her. Did they explain what they saw in the sister's home that concerned them?
I'm in the position right now of getting a guardian appointed for my mom. Long story, won't go into it but the law is clear that the state cannot force someone into a home against their will. Now if my mom said, OK, then they could place her. But until she is assessed properly and it's determined that she is a danger to herself or others, then she can live with in-home aid.
My mom is considered incapacitated (very forgetful, loses track of day and night, needs help with shopping and paying bills, etc.) but she isn't so bad that she could hurt herself. So she will stay in her home with help.
First step: I think I would ask them what they see in family home that concerns them and then correct it. If that doesn't work, you may need a lawyer to help you through this. Laws vary from state to state.
Well, the play isn't over until the fat lady sings. You will have a hearing, most likely in surrogate court, where the rules of evidence are very loose. The judges will listen to your side of the story and your loved one can even testify. There are problems with hiring an attorney. The second you do all actions must go through that attorney, and you may not contact the court or anyone directly. Furthermore, once you hire an attorney, you will lose the right to a free attorney or free advice from the "pro se" attorney at surrogate court. That does not mean it wouldn't be a bad idea to purchase a single hour or two of time with an attorney with a practice in this area. But don't tell the court this. In such hearings the court will appoint an attorney for the loved one, who will be responsible for and to her. Under a guardianship you are required to submit reports to the guardianship court. At the time of the guardianship an investigator is appointed by the judge. It is this investigator whom you should contact to determine what their report was, and if in fact they changed it. If you feel the investigator was biased you can make a motion to the judge to appoint another investigator. A "motion" is a one line request to the court to perform an action. Just remember that every "motion" to change the status of your guardianship must be answered in a timely fashion. You cannot let a motion by social services go unanswered.
I would not recommend having anyone other than yourself or a family member appointed as a guardian.
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