High Country Bank – November

High Country Bank Celebrates National Family Caregiver Month   

6 Money Tips for Family Caregivers

According to the Caregiver Action Network, more than 90 million Americans care for a loved one living with a disability, disease or experiencing reduced financial capability as a result of aging. Financial caregivers, such as those with a power of attorney, trustee or a federal benefits fiduciary, play an important role in ensuring that all finances from routine to complex are managed wisely, helping their loved ones maintain the best quality of life possible. In recognition of National Family Caregiver Month, High Country Bank is helping financial caregivers better understand their role.

“Millions of Americans are designated to provide financial care to their loved ones,” said Jodi Baldwin, Vice-President of Operations at High Country Bank. “As a financial caregiver, it is extremely important that you stay up to date on any changes in laws and regulations that may impact your role as a fiduciary and your ability to take care of your senior.”

High Country Bank is offering the following tips to help individuals understand their role as financial caregivers:

  • Learn the rights and restrictions that apply to your role. Financial caregivers, such as those with a power of attorney, trustees, and federal benefits fiduciaries, are fiduciaries with a duty to act and make decisions on their loved one’s behalf. Learn the legal responsibilities of your assigned authority in order to better execute your role.
  • Manage money and other assets wisely. Financial caregivers may be in charge of daily, unexpected and future expense their loved one may incur. Especially if the beneficiary has a fixed income or limited finances, it is extremely important that caregivers minimize unnecessary costs and budget accordingly to ensure that all money is properly allocated.
  • Recognize danger signs. Seniors have become major targets for financial abuse and fraud. Make sure to stay alert to signs of scams or identity theft that may put your loved one’s assets in peril.
  • Keep careful records. When acting as a financial agent, proper documentation is not only encouraged but required. Make sure you keep well-organized financial records, including up-to date lists of assets and debts and references of all financial transactions.
  • Stay informed. Monitor changes in financial status of the beneficiary and take appropriate action, as needed. Also, be sure to stay up to date on changes in the laws affecting seniors.
  • Seek professional advice. Consult a banker or other professional advisors when you’re not sure what to do.

In addition, High Country Bank is providing an explanation of the various roles and responsibilities of three types of financial caregivers: power of attorney, trustee and federal fiduciary.


Understanding your role as a power of attorney.


POA is designated by your loved one and gives you the authority to act and make decisions on their behalf, including managing and having access to their bank and other financial accounts. Authority continues if loved one becomes incapacitated and ends when power is revoked or loved one dies.


Understanding your role as a trustee.


Authority is given once you are named as trustee or co-trustee of a revocable living trust. As a trustee your authority applies only to the property noted in the trust, authorizing you to protect, manage and distribute the trust’s assets as directed in the trust document. Authority continues after the death of the trust creator or grantor.


Understanding your role as a federal benefits fiduciary.


A federal benefits fiduciary is appointed to accept and delegate federal government benefit payments, such as Social Security and Veterans Affairs benefits, in the beneficiary’s best interest. Funds for the beneficiary are received through an account set up solely for this purpose. As a representative payee for Social Security benefits or a VA fiduciary for VA benefits, you are required to keep detailed records of all transactions related to the beneficiary and file annual reports detailing how benefits were used.


The Caregiver Action Network (the National Family Caregivers Association) began promoting national recognition of family caregivers in 1994. President Clinton signed the first NFC Month Presidential Proclamation in 1997 and every president since has followed suit by issuing an annual proclamation recognizing and honoring family caregivers each November.


To learn more information about National Family Caregiver Month and your role as a financial caregiver, visit For tips and additional resources, visit



Charity of the Month


High Country Bank is proud to announce its November Charities of the Month; Christmas Mountain in Salida, and Toys for Tots in Buena Vista and Cañon City.


High Country Bank Continues Support of Salida Soup


It is with pleasure that High Country Bank continues to support Sellars Project Space as they orchestrate Salida Soup, which is a monthly community-based potluck where participants, through this micro-granting dinner, assist a variety of projects in the Upper Arkansas River Valley.

Salida High School Drama Team receives $250.00 from High Country Bank at last month’s Salida Soup, along with over $350.00 in donations from attendees

Gathering in Gratitude


High Country Bank was proud to be a Summit Club Sponsor at Starpoint’s Annual “Gathering in Gratitude” fundraiser held on October 27th.  This year celebrates 40 years that Starpoint as provided services to people with disabilities in Colorado.  We take great pride in our partnership with Starpoint and we are grateful for their support of our communities.



Salida Community Center


High Country Bank is pleased to donate to the Salida Community Center so that they may purchase food for Christmas meals.  Approximately 500 individuals will be served, along with 200 food deliveries.  Volunteers will serve and deliver these meals with open-hearts.  Thank you to a community that continues to give back.



Bowl for Great Futures


High Country Bank of Canon City is sponsoring the “Bowl for Great Futures” benefiting the Boys & Girls Club of Fremont County on Saturday, November 4th.  Lynnette Passarelli and Kristi Brownfield of High Country Bank challenged all of the financial institutions in Fremont County to beat them in this fund raising effort for the Boys & Girls Club.  This is the 6th year participating in the event and HCB of Canon City has been the top fund raiser 6 years in a row!  Our customers are so generous, we couldn’t have done it without them!

Central Colorado Conservancy


It is with pleasure that High Country Bank continues to sponsor the Central Colorado Conservancy in their annual event, held November 9, 2017, 5:30 pm to 9:00 pm at the Chaffee County Fairgrounds.  The mission of the Conservancy is to conserve Colorado land, water, and wildlife, through partnerships with landowners, agricultural producers, and the community.  For more information visit:


Lights, Camera, Savings!


High Country Bank is participating in the American Bankers Association foundation Lights, Camera, Save! video contest to engage teens in educating themselves and their peers about saving and using money wisely.  We’re looking for creative, innovative concepts – your childrens’ imaginations are the only limit to coming up with unique savings scenarios! Winning videos will be posted on YouTube and viewed by people across the globe. The contest is free and open to all students age 13-18, with the videos of local winners moving on to the national competition. The entry period is Oct. 1- Dec. 1, 2017.


The top three national winners of Lights, Camera, Save! will receive awards of $1,000, $2,500 or $5,000 to fund their savings goals. The three local winners will receive $100, $250, or $500. There will be a local people’s choice award held on Facebook. The winner will receive $100. The teacher of the local grand prize winner will win $100 to spend in his or her classroom.’s/lights-camera-save-rules.pdf 

or (check out last year’s winners) to learn more.

Please contact Robin NeJame at for more information.


Honoring our Veterans

We are grateful to have the opportunity to engage our neighbors and work with them in “Building Futures Together.” Visit us at and please like us on Facebook   Member FDIC.

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