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CARENOTES | Past Carenotes | Let's Talk

Carenotes

Welcome to CareNotes. In this special section we will feature a reader's letter and provide an opportunity for an interactive exchange that will help find some answers and possible solutions to concerns. If you wish to respond to this letter, simple follow the link provided at the end of the letter and add your comments and thoughts to our CareNotes Board.

This Week's Carenote - 10/23/12

My dad will soon to be 93.  He has congestive heart failure and an aneurysm in the aorta.  He is frail after having some serious falls in the last eight months, including passing out for several hours in his kitchen.
 
My sister and I live in Minnesota and Dad lives in Iowa—a five-hour trip.  We signed him up for a medical alert system, a meal home delivery service and a caregiver.  He discontinued each after a short run.
 
On our the last trip to the doctor with him, we discovered that Dad's driver’s license expired several years ago.  He took the written test again, but failed.  He has been advised by a letter from the Department of Motor Vehicles that his doctor sent in a medical form stating Dad can't have a license for medical reasons.  However, Dad insists on driving.  We have talked with the police, whose hands are tied;  we are talking to Dad's lawyer this week.  We have been advised by different professionals that we need to take the keys.  We have done that, but my dad is threatening us with a lawsuit.
 
Our concern is not just the threat to himself, but that he could cause injury to someone else.  What is our liability, even though we have tried to stop him from driving; what actions can we take to protect ourselves?
 
S.

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