Doreen Koch simply wants to be able to decide the fate of her Lumby home.
The 92-year-old woman is in a legal battle over her property after her son, who had power of attorney, signed a contract to sell her property before he died of liver failure in 2020.
“Doreen didn’t athorize the sale nor was she consulted,” writes Louise Pohl in a GoFundMe campaign she launched to help Koch.
While gieving the loss of her son, Koch found out she was being sued by the developer to complete the sale.
“Like many seniors, Doreen is on a fixed, low monthly income. Her three-year legal battle has cost Doreen over $100,000,” Pohl wrote.
The legal process has ripped through Koch’s life savings and sunk her into debt, taking a toll on her physical and mental health. She also recently learned that she will face additional costs of up to another $100,000 to defend herself in a second trial.
“Doreen has been taken advantage of, abused and bullied. If you are outraged by the injustice of her predicament, she could use your support to pay her lawyer bills,” Pohl wrote.
According to the GoFundMe, Koch moved to the 10-acre farm property in 1990, heading back to the Okanagan where she grew up. Her property serves as a floodplain for Lumby, reducing floodwaters that damage local homes and businesses and filtering groundwater for those in the area who rely on wells. Her land also provides habitat to wildlife such as otters, pheasants, beavers, deer and many bird species.
“Doreen wants this family jewel to remain in its pristine state,” Pohl wrote.
As of Friday afternoon, March 31, the GoFundMe has raised $12,755 of its $100,000 goal.