Author Topic: MIL is at it again.  (Read 5697 times)

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Deetee

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Re: MIL is at it again.
« Reply #30 on: December 20, 2013, 03:58:41 PM »
You know, even if I thought she was stark raving mad, I would still take the cheque and cash it. But, if I felt concerned about her mental state, I would simply put the money in another account and return it to her as needed.

Mergatroyd

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Re: MIL is at it again.
« Reply #31 on: December 20, 2013, 04:11:06 PM »
You know, even if I thought she was stark raving mad, I would still take the cheque and cash it. But, if I felt concerned about her mental state, I would simply put the money in another account and return it to her as needed.

POD

JenJay

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Re: MIL is at it again.
« Reply #32 on: December 20, 2013, 04:20:58 PM »
My first thought was, she probably wants to give her son some money now instead of waiting for death and inheritance, which can be tainted by sorrow and anger (at the IRS if nothing else).

Thank her for her generous gift. Tell her how kind she is. If you want to pass it on to a charity, do so. If you think she wants you to use it on something fun, like a weekend trip, do so; and send her pictures with your thanks.

This may be an extravagant gift but, if she is mentally capable of making that choice, refusing it would be ungracious at best.

That was my thought as well. I know several people who prefer to give very generous birthday and Christmas gifts rather than leave it as an inheritance that the recipient will owe taxes on. I say use it for something you'd like to treat yourself to and then gush to her about it. I bet she'll be thrilled to hear that she provided you with such a wonderful gift/treat/experience.

YummyMummy66

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Re: MIL is at it again.
« Reply #33 on: December 20, 2013, 04:34:23 PM »
So, MIL is financially stable.

You are financially stable.

She wants to send you this gift.  You don't want her to spend her money on you.  BUT, this is what she wants to do!

Honestly, I think you are the rude ones.  IF she did not want to send you a check, she would not.  If she did not have the money to do so, she would not.  Apparently she wants to send you this gift. 

You should say Thank you and move on.

Spend it, save it, don't spend it.  But, it is a gift and you should be appreciative of it.

Luci

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Re: MIL is at it again.
« Reply #34 on: December 20, 2013, 04:36:41 PM »
As one who does this, please do know it is part of estate planning for us, but we don't attach strings to the gifts. If it is spent on a vacation, downpayment or paying off a car, that's great, too.

If you are honestly worried that she may run out of funds before she runs out of heartbeats, put it in a separate account or investment, still in your name but to be used if she needs it later.

It is given with love and hoping that you can enjoy when you want to and there if you need it. It also means that you are trusted with that amount of money - if you had a drug or gambling problem, it probably wouldn't be given directly to you.

I would be absolutely crushed if it were returned to us. As one receiver said, looking surprised, "Well, thanks. I can find a place for this." I don't know what he did with it, but it's fine.

I love "better given with warm hands than cold."

JeanFromBNA

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Re: MIL is at it again.
« Reply #35 on: December 20, 2013, 06:59:57 PM »
I agree that as long as she is 1.  mentally stable, 2. financially secure, and 3.  not liable to attach any strings, that you should accept the gift with a warm thank you. 

Last Christmas, our inlaws tried to give us $1000, and the same to each of their four children.  We tore up the check and returned it to them. They're in declining health, and while they think that they're rich because they've never had that much money saved before, we know that they're not.  They have a good emergency fund, but that's it.  When their health becomes more of an issue, they will need every cent.

*inviteseller

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Re: MIL is at it again.
« Reply #36 on: December 20, 2013, 07:16:27 PM »
I feel your pain Thipu...my dad just passed in August and he left my mom comfortable.  Usually they gave all of us kids each $100 for Christmas, but this year, she gave me a very large amount in cash.  I am not comfortable taking it.  She is of somewhat sound mind and is good financially, but I worry about her long term as she does have some health issues and we have seen her mind slipping a bit and I would prefer she make an account to put some money aside for any long term care she may face.  My sister told me to just spend it, but I can't bring myself to do it and when I told step mom I don't want this large amount, she got angry with me.  I have it in an envelope in my dresser drawer and I have decided to take it to her bank and put it back into her account.  While everyone is saying 'spend it' and I understand your reasons behind that (early inheritance, the giver having enjoyment from seeing you with it), some of us may feel uncomfortable taking it for many different (and valid) reasons.

White Lotus

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Re: MIL is at it again.
« Reply #37 on: December 20, 2013, 07:23:54 PM »
If you are concerned about her future, you can stick it on a savings vehicle and funnel it back to her should she need it.

Outdoor Girl

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Re: MIL is at it again.
« Reply #38 on: December 20, 2013, 07:30:51 PM »
If you are concerned about her future, you can stick it on a savings vehicle and funnel it back to her should she need it.

This is what I'd do.  My Dad is going to be moving to an apartment in the near future.  I can see him funnelling money from the sale of his house to my brother and I.  I'll use it to pay down my mortgage/line of credit but be prepared to support Dad later, if he should need it.  My brother will do the same.
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TurtleDove

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Re: MIL is at it again.
« Reply #39 on: December 21, 2013, 11:38:25 AM »
I would be extremely offended if someone ripped up my gift to them and returned it to me. It is saying, to me, I don't think you are of sound mind and I don't think you are capable of making your own decisions. If you truly believe a person needs a conservator, then get them evaluated and have one appointed. Otherwise this is not "kind." It is presumptuous and rude.

JoyinVirginia

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Re: MIL is at it again.
« Reply #40 on: December 21, 2013, 12:18:29 PM »
I was going to write a long post explaining why elders receiving certain types of assistance must keep their savings below a certain amount to be eligible.
the etiquette principle is basic: if someone gives you a check as a gift and you rip it up and refuse it, that is beyond rude. That is almost like giving them the cut direct.  Putting the money back in their account may ruin their financial planning.
What if the plan is that when the person dies they will leave no restate. They are giving you inheritance now to get pleasure, avoid taxes, whatever?  Enjoy a gift freely given without strings.

JeanFromBNA

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Re: MIL is at it again.
« Reply #41 on: December 21, 2013, 12:57:18 PM »
Taking money from those who can't afford to give it is wrong. That goes for any other present that the giver can't afford. There is a lot of room between accepting any gift without question and appointing a conservator for the giver.

TurtleDove

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Re: MIL is at it again.
« Reply #42 on: December 21, 2013, 01:28:22 PM »
Returning a monetary gift is saying you believe a person is incapable of handling their financial affairs. If true, I would take steps to have someone else handle finances. If not true, rude.

kherbert05

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Re: MIL is at it again.
« Reply #43 on: December 21, 2013, 04:17:09 PM »
Could your MIL be doing this on the advice of her financial advisers?


My Dad's bosses used to give their adult children and their adult children-in-law $10,000 every Christmas. In their case it was about passing on their kids inheritance and reducing taxes later.


The trustees of my Great-Aunt's money did something similar gifting her brother, sister-in-law, and 5 of 7 of her nieces and nephews (2 had addiction problems) a significant amount a couple of years in a row. Later the great nieces/nephews were also gifted money. The reason the interest from that money could have tipped her up to a new tax bracket that would have significantly reduced the amount of her estate - and her family needed that money to pay for her care in one of the best nursing homes in Houston. She was a fantastic woman and we wanted what was best for her. Due to the nature of her medical problems and some of her delusions care in one of our homes was not an option. I don't know about the other household but my parents put the money in accounts that were FDIC insured, had some interest and left the money alone. Later Sis and I did the same thing. If something had happened and Aunt Ruthie had run out of money for some reason that would have gone back to her. In our minds that was her money till she passed.


It was fun to inform her care givers that the stuff about playing bridge with European Nobility, racing cars against Paul Newman and the like, and other exploits were rooted not in the dementia but in her life. Daddy used to call her Auntie Mame. They didn't believe us till we showed them photographs from the 40's - 70's.
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Thipu1

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Re: MIL is at it again.
« Reply #44 on: December 22, 2013, 11:22:54 AM »
Thanks, everyone for your thoughtful and helpful suggestions. 

We'll have to talk to MIL about this but it will work out. 

MIL makes these gifts because she wants to be 'fair'.  We feel uncomfortable about a gift of this size because there are younger members of the family who have small children and could put the money to better use for college funds and such.  Sharing out MIL's gift to us could result in great convolutions.   

We do not feel insulted by the gift. We know she means all the best for us.   Because Mr. Thipu and MIL's SOL keep tabs on MIL's finances we know she is doing well.   

In the past we have accepted 'Gifts in Anticipation of Death' from both sides of the family. We understood why this was done and the money was put into accounts to provide resources for the
donors should they need it in later life. 

We haven't made a decision about what we will do but you've given us food for thought. 

Thank you all again.