After all that has happened, after all of my 350+ posts warning everyone–esp. miscreant lawyers to DO THE RIGHT THING IN PROBATE and don’t act without jurisdiction, do not isolate the senior, do not allow a guardian to continue on who isolates the senior, listen to and invite family reports on the behavior of the guardian, I am still getting reports of cases where 1) seniors are thrown against their will into nursing homes and being (illegally) drugged; 2) the court is telling “interested parties” to shut up in court–even attorneys–who are trying to report that the proposed temporary guardian is an abuser and is specifically excluded from prior written directive of the ward to ever act as guardian; 3) closed court proceedings without rhyme or reason on the transcript and all sorts of other shennagins.
Rule No. 1. Most important. Before you step into Probate Court know the Probate Act regarding disabled adults. Read it thoroughly. Know who and “interested party” is, who needs to be served. Find all the adult siblings, children and parents, or if none, then next of kin. Know who holds the POA for a senior. If there is no POA, the relatives should get together and elect the most honest, trustworthy caring person as guardian who will carry out any advance directives.
Rule No. 2 Bring your own court reporter. There are dozens of fully electronic, licensed court reporters who are unbiased, unbribable and will deliver you a transcript by the end of the week in any e-format you desire, fully searchable for about the same cost as the court’s “official reporter”. Be forewarned the “official reporters” from the Daley Center often lose, alter, stop reporting, etc. transcripts. I have dozens of stories of this, one for me for sure, so don’t go there. Hire an outside court reporter. If nothing else, it puts a chill on nonsense in the courtroom, even if she never records a single word–you need to know that just by her being there she has done a great job to get you a fair and just agreed order that day and her sitting fee of $125 can save you millions of an entire estate in the end. Don’t skimp on this step.
Rule No. 3. Be prepared to argue the constitution and against closed proceedings and doctor’s reports. Be aware that Dr. Rabin and Dr. Amdur and other “recommended docs from the court list” declare everyone incompetent. Get your own work up write up whatever. Don’t let the senior be drugged with strong psychotropic drugs. It’s illegal and none are approved by the FDA for those over age 60 (or teenagers). Threaten to report the doc if you must, but there is a legal procedure for giving a person psychotropic drugs that must be strictly followed (In Re Tiffany). Be sure to read this case and follow the mandate re psychotropic drugs if you are GAL or PG and doing this.
Rule No. 4 Expect anything in Probate, from closed proceedings, to having a case with a large estate being called last after everyone is gone so the judge can arrange a slew of “friends” to ensure the senior is declared disabled, that a $500 to $600 per hour atty is involved, that you, even as an “interested party” will not be allowed to speak about something important including abuse, isolation and drugging, etc.
Rule No. 5 If a guardian has been appointed, make sure there is a summons, petition, affidavit of service and Sodini notices to the adult siblings, children and parents of the disabled 14 days in advance of the hearing, notifying the interested parties of the time, date and place of hearing.
Rule 5. If you weren’t allowed to speak in court, file a “Bystander’s Report” together with a “Report to the Court and GAL” detailing your knowledge of who is an abuser and who should not become guardian. Detail what you know about the Ward’s written advance directives and demand the court follow that, as provided for by the Probate Act. Do not let abusers become guardians.
All of this is based upon my story from yesterday. After 350+ posts on this blog, which I know the GAL’s read, the judges read, etc. IT IS STILL HAPPENING
From an atty yesterday, one of my favorite court rooms: 1) closed proceedings without notice or reason; 2) the POA holder’s atty was told to “shut up” and not speak; 3) the case involved a lot of money (est. $10 million in property plus a mansion). 4) the ward was put in a nursing home by an out of state son for having a messy, cluttered home (anyone hear of a cleaning lady); 5) the ward is being drugged and is acting like a zombie; 5) she has been put in a nursing home against her will (this is a continuing theme in these cases); 6) she has stated in writing her abusive son is not to be made guardian, but the court did just that yesterday; 7) the court tied in doc said she is “incompetent” after a 5 minute conversation where at the start he told her 5 important words, and then at the end of the conversation she could not recall all of them, so she is incompetent; 8) proceedings were closed where the judge would only talk to the “tied in” attys and GAL and abusive son.
Don’t be shocked in Probate. Never be shocked. Be prepared to argue, present and preserve what happens. Bring a court reporter. Demand everything be on the record. No closed proceedings, no closed doors. If the GAL’s come from the “judge’s area” which was prohibited by court order after Greylord–report them to the ARDC.
Corruption in probate has to stop, and this starts with concerns by everyone. Let the court know via a Bystander’s Report and Report to the Court and GAL. Let the ARDC and JIB (Judicial Inquiry Board) know via a written complaint. If there is a theft, conversion, embezzlement–put it in your Report to the Court AND report it to the authorities–the local police, the State’s atty, the FBI and don’t stop complaining until there is a thorough, complete and honest investigation.
If the court won’t let you speak, contact me and I’ll publish what you have to say on this blog. The disabled have rights also, and the public needs to know and be forewarned. If you don’t get justice in court, I will give you a forum to demand justice via this blog.
Some have asked me when the blog will stop. I always respond, when the corruption has ended and I get no further reports of it.
So far, no such luck.