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August 17th, 2018 at 04:11 pm

I have a bad habit of paying for things for my mother, and then forgetting to reimburse myself. She has never used credit cards, so it's not like I can just be an authorized user on an account of hers to purchase things.

She has the funds to pay for her own clothes, but I have to do the shopping. Things get busy, I lose track of receipts and can't reimburse myself right away, and all of a sudden months have gone by and I'm out a significant amount of money.

Sometimes I order things online that need to be returned by mail, and I fall behind on that, too. I won't get the refund until I mail an item back, which just keeps my own credit card bill higher than it needs to be.

We go out for meals once in a while, and I've been paying. It seemed only fair after years of her paying for my meal, and me leaving the tip for both of us. But I've started to feel the pinch.

Tonight I caught up on things related to the clothes shopping. I wrote myself a reimbursement check for over $88, and I have a return packed up to be mailed tomorrow morning. I should be getting a refund on that of over $30.

Tomorrow I'll figure out her share of our last meal out, and reimburse myself from a petty cash envelope I started a few months back. I've started to take a photo of the tab with my phone when we go out, so I have some sort of receipt.

I've got to keep on top of this better for my own sake. I keep up to date with paying all her other expenses, filing billing statements and receipts, etc. If anyone ever asks how I'm spending her money, I don't want there to be any question of mismanagement. But I end up shorting myself sometimes.

5 Responses to “Reimbursements”

  1. crazyliblady Says:

    If she asks for you to buy something for her, can she give you the money ahead of time so that you are not out the money at all?

  2. creditcardfree Says:

    Since you have the ability to track your own bills and expenses, I bet you have the ability to to get this issue in check. It's a matter of being organized. I take you have the ability to write yourself a check or move money from your mother's account? Maybe a simple reminder to do this once a week on your phone or calendar would help. Taking pictures of receipts is a good idea!

  3. StressLess Says:

    crazyliblady, we're far beyond that. My mom has been in Assisted Living for over a year now, and basically hasn't touched cash or written a check since. Even before that, I was managing more and more of her paperwork, as things deteriorated slowly. Everything was already set up legally for this eventuality.

    creditcardfree, I think it really is a matter of getting on a schedule. But it's not so easy to structure my week when, as a retired person, I don't really have an enforced schedule or many deadlines.

  4. snalfu Says:

    Since you manage your mom's financial affairs, merely order a debit card linked to her account for purchases on her behalf. At restaurants, ask for two bills and use her debit card to pay mom's meal.

  5. StressLess Says:

    snalfu, I do have a debit card for her account, but don't like using it, due to consumer protections not being as good as for a credit card. I don't need the prolonged hassle of getting refunds if her account were to be hacked.

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