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Mom had a CD for $5,000 with my name on it but p.o.d. (payable on her death.) She considered it to be my CD. Over the years I used it for collateral on loans. 3-1/2 years ago I wanted to use it for a loan again, but she said it wasn't earning hardly any interest on it, so why not just cash it in. So we did. She also had a $5,000 CD with my brother's name on it, also payable on her death. She also decided to cash his in for him. She figured it was her choice to forget about the payable on death, and cash them in for us. When she got the cds, it was probably 10 to 15 years ago. Had she not put p.o.d. on them, and just had our names on them, there wouldn't be a problem. But now she needs nursing home care. Is this going to be a problem, even though our names were on them? And if there is a penalty and she has no way to pay the penalty, then what? Is she out on the street, so to speak? I'm disabled, and my brother has no money. So we have no way to pay it back. Mom put the house in our names 10 years ago with her having a life estate. That was her only asset, other than a car valued at about $1,000. So she has no way to pay a penalty. So if no one can pay it, what happens next? Because she put the house in our names while retaining a life estate, we can't sell it till she dies. And we're broke, so have no money to pay for upkeep. Her mom lived to be 96, so we might have to hold onto it for another 9 years if she lives as long as her mom. We can't afford our own places plus hers. I live in a trailer with my disabled husband and don't want to sell my place and move into hers. When she dies, we'd sell her house (not a trailer) and then I wouldn't have my trailer to move back into. My brother has a nice double wide on its own lot and doesn't want to sell his place either. Neither of us can get a loan so we have no way to pay the cds back. Mom is 87 and can't get a loan either, for the penalty. So what happens when no one can pay the penalty??? Does that mean mom can't go into the nursing home? Is there any way around the life estate? Could she put it in my name (since I'm disabled would that exempt the transfer to just my name with no life estate) so that we could then sell it instead of waiting till she dies? This is all so confusing, she's in the hospital and they want her in the nursing home within days.

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When, the original poster said the CDs were cashed and given 3.5 years ago, well within 5 year lookback. And parent needs nursing home now, so they do need to worry and find out legal options before filing for Medicaid.
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Check what that look back period in your state is. I think in most places it is only 5 years so you might not have to deal with that. Maybe you could ask Gray Law attorney or legal adviser at a senior center in your community what your best plan of action is.
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An elder law attorney just recently informed me that putting the Life Estate up for sale will enable the applicant to qualify for Medicaid. This does not change the ownership of the real estate. In reality, a Life Estate is only worth the rental value for the rest of holder's life. What will anyone pay for that? Effectively, there is no market for a LE; but as long as it is up for sale, Medicaid requirement is satisfied.
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Cody - it can be rented.
But before you pop open that bottle of bubbly........ needs to be rented at fair market value. & rent is income to each “owner”. Income is reportable and taxable. Someone will need to deal with property management and also make sure the % of rent due to mom is included in required by Medicaid copay to the NH. This could pose eligibility issue if fmv rent added to moms existing monthly income (like SS, other retirement) could take her over the Medicaid limit for income set by your state.

It flat won’t be simple.

Really gather up all property legal, all of moms old dpoa and schedule a appt with an elder law atty. If this were me personally I’d get NAELA level atty.
Please realize it is NOT that the NH that wants the $ from the house sale. NH needs to be paid for their stay...... whether it’s paid from $ from moms savings; from the sale of a home ; or if eligible from Medicaid’s daily paid R&B $ to the NH; or or that someone in the family private pays for her stay.

Based on what you’ve posted, it reads there is no way around Moms having her LE on the property without it having a value which is an asset. Have NAELA atty work with mom & you all to look at what options exist and what the costs would be.
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The house was put into our names 10 years ago, with her having a life estate giving her the right to live in it until she dies. Her name is not on the title, and it was done 10 years ago so look back period is not an issue. The deed is in mine and my brothers name, then there is a letter stapled to the deed giving her the life estate. Had she not done the life estate at all, and just put our names on it (without the life estate letter attached) then we could just sell it now. Someone said all 3 of us could sell it. Legally yes, but then it would no longer be protected and it would start the look back period all over again. The nursing home would want the money from the sale. What if we rent it out? Does the nursing home get the rent money, even though her name isn't on the title, and is way past the look back period?? Could some of the rent go towards maintaining the house?  Also, I am her power of attorney.  Both financial and medical.
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igloo, life estate doesn't say whether revocable or ir, but nothing ever said about taxes, how would that work? all deeds have been recorded; are they checked? they definitely weren't done by elder law attorney and actually attorney who did the most of them said only did because fil had had done on the one deed he made sure was done before he passed because he wanted to make sure it was turned over to them; the rest weren't actually done until after he passed by mil and gc she made poa and they didn't care; actually mil didn't even really want but didn't tell lawyer, actually not even sure - well, know she didn't know anything about them, because upset at "finding" out, otherwise, why looking for that one, then upset at not being able to find out; lawyer, of course, only knew it was done, not what fil had done with it
I learned about the percentages from the IRS tax tables; nobody thinks any of the property, even the house, is worth very much anyway, so they don't really think be issue with Medicaid re nh, but any property has some value but would Medicaid have appraisal done themselves to determine how much lien or at least how much value toward the lien?

re other situation, maybe it's a state thing, too, but in state of my dad, courthouse told me even dpoa wouldn't cover real estate unless specifically stated to so couldn't sell dad's house, at least not legally, but if I had would have been to have allowed him to go into assisted living, probably not nursing home, at that point, anyway, but something ran into after he passed away, with them only having recertification every 4 years is his house was not worth what they assessing it at, so trying to get comps by house sales in his neighborhood, only one close at time, but was foreclosure, so didn't count, but burned - strange, huh - shortly after, so then bought from insurance company? since when were houses totaled out and turned over to insurance companies? what about the property house was on? have you ever heard of anything like that? bought by somebody who owned another house in neighborhood with mortgage but none on this one, bought by mortgaging yet another house owned that he lived in so no real record of final price paid, then another house finally went on market, with same situation, elderly male widow owner passed away and even though assessment situation might have been different, still didn't sell in its condition, not until same type repairs made, all this determined to be defined by insurance companies who won't insure, not necessarily because of condition, just age, and basically had to be done by family, otherwise getting underwater for sure, still had to lower price even after for to finally sell, but at least had family willing to do, something don't seem to have
in current situation, not sure why issue brought up about uncle laying outside for an hour before being missed
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GuestShoppe - Ryan Todd...beyond a charmer. His Mom “he was coddled too much”, now that’s an understatement...... bet she goes to visit him in prison as it really wasn’t his fault. Ryan Todd was led astray by bad convienience store clerks and unscrupulous pawn shop owners. I bet if you added up the check cashing fees, they made a hefty sum out of his fraud.  My goodness his folks were living at what look like from the photo a modest trailer park; “Ryan Todd” poster boy for POS. 

 Love, love, love the part where “Ryan Todd” asked the NH for a refund of the $ paid for his dads last month NH stay as dad died before the end of month cause there should be a refund paid. Cojones! 
GuestShoppe, honey, you gotta link good old boy “Ryan Todd” on a regular basis to posts on AC!
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If you want to see how the home was sold and money misused, there is a headline for Ryan Todd Powers, just convicted in Florida of elder abuse.
"Son steals parents' money, leaves dad at funeral home"
he left mother in medicaid nursing home, stole both parents pensions without paying nursing homes after he put parents in different ones, and he left his father in funeral home without paying for services so taxpayers would pay final expenses. A real charmer.
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Deb - since each state runs its Medicaid program uniquely, everybody’s answer is right and everybody’s is wrong depending on what state your in and what the latest changes the legislature does.....

On LE my understanding is most have LE if it was irrevocable done over 5 yrs ago is beyond MERP. But LE irrevocable under 5 yrs has transfer penalty. And states consider any LE if revocable to involve gifting & transfer penalty and the amt based on the % tenant owner age & property value with % shared by all remainder men. Revocable can be switched back. It’s not simple; really LE needs sharp elder law atty to shepherd the application imo.

LE breakout usually done by a taxation pro. Although irs has tables. If it were me, I’d get a property inspection then solid appraisal done & perhaps residential engineering report done before even turning it over to taxation atty (LL.M) to run %.

About the son who sold his moms house at my moms 1st NH, I imagine he had dpoa that allowed for all finances, sold her home, put the $ in her account and then paid himself. TX MLS allow dpoa to sign off the paper work at the act of sale, so his mom not needed to be there. TX has annual recertification, so I’d bet property sale showed up as all real property data is easily cross referenced btw county assessors & state database and the property was already in her file from the initial application. Just a few keystrokes for Medicaid to find sale to surface and to the penny. But whatever the path was, he didn’t report it to Medicaid, he ignored all correspondence and NH had enough and got APS involved which snowballed to his mom being made Ward of the state and moved to another NH by the new guardian. Major drama and totally avoidable.

I hope your families LE is irrevocable and beyond any MERP should they ever need Medicaid as it sounds so very very convoluted. Good luck.
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oh, regarding the other, almost had that situation, not with my family, but with some friends of one of my children - with some of their/our help - not mine - they got his father down here out of the facility he was in, apparently he had no guardian, etc. and could make that decision, even though he was there because of a tbi - go figure - anyway, affected his colon, so because of the 45 day waiting/transfer between states period you can just guess, leave that to you, but emergency surgery, then attempt at rehab but you can imagine how that went; they weren't told about his tbi when placed, so definitely were ready for him to go when time came but "they"/son and just gf hadn't realized what they'd bitten off so they didn't want him back and even left town the week he was to be discharged to them; well, leave it to me, I suppose but I didn't think fair to them? him? but also he had family, still had parents himself who'd been watching out for him - again, not sure of legalities, but knew they wouldn't want to happen to him what happened with situation you described so called and told them what was going on; wasn't entirely sure what you described would actually happen but guess it does, at least eventually, and they certainly were saying it would but they left anyway and refused to come back, except, and, yes, this is exactly what they planned to; they'd had his check transferred, since not lt yet, wasn't going to nh yet, they planned to come get it but not him, but finally, I suppose, either enough pressure or they finally got convinced of what would actually happen; think they thought would go the other way that if they didn't come get him he would just get to stay where he was and they could either come see him or at least they'd know where he was, think only when realized he really might be moved and they wouldn't know and might even be held responsible that somebody, not even sure it ended up being them, finally did come get him, take him back to at least the area he was, though don't think was allowed to go back to where he was, which probably wasn't a bad idea; had little too much freedom there, which is part of what allowed that whole situation, and got him placed in a somewhat more secure facility, though it was a hard adjustment on him; I normally am more a believer in letting even those type people have as much liberty as possible but guess have to say in this situation his really did need to be more curtailed; he just didn't have the judgement
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duh, right here - Medicaid Estate Recovery Program, right? but in Codybaby's case don't believe anybody was living with mom, not sure what will end up happening with mil, actually talked to new hub over the weekend, had gotten the impression he didn't think anything was wrong, but didn't get that idea then, not sure what he's thinking; he wasn't with her, not sure what that means
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First, igloo, I believe codybaby's family, as I said, has probably passed the lookback period, like we have as well, so don't think the remainder is the issue as much as the actual LE value is; in our case, true, mil no longer has the actual money fil left her to take care of such things, but he set up his pension in such a way that she would get it, which would well take care of the property taxes, even if she has remarried, which, one, not sure he expected - but then not sure he didn't either; either way he provided for her - but even if, not sure if he knew the rules had been changed and she would continue to get his pension anyway, which didn't used to be the case; not sure how he'd feel about it, but anyway....but as for the other, either nobody's willing to call her bluff or doesn't think she should have to pay or don't think she's the one actually responsible; everybody pretty much thinks they actually own the property, just have to let her live there if she were to choose to do so; the issue is more if she were to have to go to a nursing home, which begs the question in the scenario you presented; how was son able to sell mom's house in the first place? but the question here is not so much if Medicaid would be applied for, which keep forgetting probably would since seems they don't consider her value of the property, but they would, wouldn't they, but the question is would they then expect nursing home to be paid upfront or would/could they just put a lien on the property until her death, although, either way, if the only money to pay would have to come from the sale of the property, ostensibly; I've heard about that MERP exemption but don't remember exactly what it is - do you mind explaining, though I'll try to look it up - thanks
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Deb - for CodyBaby the property is in a Life Estate, so family doesn’t really own it completely till after the elder dies. LEs have ownership shared between the life tenant and the remainder men. Just what the % & amount depends on tenant age and property value and then what type of LE was done. It’s not simple to begin with and if Medicaid is applied for the remainder men part can be viewed as gifting with transfer penalty placed depending on what type of LE and how long ago it was done.

Your family is having an issue that happens often..... the elder refuses to or cannot pay property costs. If it’s that the elder can’t afford property costs, then family needs to pay the whatever’s.
But if it’s that the elders viewpoint is “you all are going to inherit, so you all need to pay now”; that they have the $$$$ but won’t pay, that’s a very VERY different problem. Elder is holding you all hostage. If you call their bluff and refuse to pay taxes, insurance etc, just what will they do??? For property taxes, most places have 3 consecutive years before a tax lien redemption can happen, if you like risk....you could push not paying taxes to 2yrs 11 mos to see if they crater. Interest is significant on delinquent property taxes, so keep that in mind.
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97 - GuestShoppe was spot-on regarding “ward”. My first experience was in sitting in probate court when I was executor for 2 different “aunts”, as PC is where guardianships are heard. It seemed to be a very fair open process with the biggest issue of family infighting & judge appoints outside temporary guardian as he’s not gonna take sniping in his courtroom. Family is thier own worse enemy. But for the family unable to be guardian - like their being deployed, or have their own health issues or have problematic background (bankruptcy) - the guardian totally works with family as their all a part of “team mom”. Once family clears their hurdles, judge can lift temporary and appoint family. Seemed Pretty open & fair. My PC has been in TX & GuestShoppe is in TX as well.

Now my 1 NH experience was at my moms first NH: lady on Medicaid across the hall from her had a son who sold her very very modest home & kept $. Lady was sweet & had been there for over a yr. Sonny was imho a total azz. The property sale had been found out & lady was suspended from Medicaid. Many loud conversations regarding her bill with him in hallway and in patio. He basically was “you can’t make me” & he also was always finding issues with the facility. One day when I was visiting my mom, big big lay commotion as Sonny came to visit and his mom was gone. Apparently NH contacted APS (as Sonny ingnored the NH certified mail 30 day notices); APS got emergency hearing (Sonny ignored APS cc’d letter too) was & judge appointed temporary guardian with mom being made ward of the state. Guardian moved her to another NH. Police were called and they escorted him out. NH turned acct over to collections. Guardian / APS could maybe file breach of fiduciary duty against Sonny too. But to me biggest issue was I cannot imagine how beyond traumatic all this was for the lady......I just cannot imagine how awful!   What’s so whack about this is that if Sonny had just let mom continue to own her home till she died & he paid all costs and kept track of costs and then filed for MERP exemptions & exclusions plus probate costs, Sonny more than likely would have inherited house as per his moms will. House maybe worth 30k very low value. 
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but would it have to actually be come up with or my earlier question, wouldn't or at least couldn't Medicaid just put the lien on it like typical
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so as poa not sure if she'd be the one responsible for coming up with all the life estate's values
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poa lives on her property so know won't want to sell hers; one of the children, as well, but also poa, because she lives there will not want any of the rest sold either
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not sure anybody even realizes the life estate has a value that would be counted if/when nursing home time comes; think they just think her income would be taken - and are just glad she has it since she's remarried because there was a time she wouldn't have it - and that would be all there'd be to it - concerned they'll find out different, that nh will want more than that
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her house isn't being kept up now
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right, it is incorrect that you can't sell it until she dies, or rather, true, "you" can't, but she can; we're being told that as well with our share of mil's property, but incorrect, however, she won't because she won't take any responsibility for anything and poa won't either; however, we're not quite there but we could be; just waiting for that shoe to drop myself
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not sure what's meant by kept exempt with single property exemption for Medicaid; my mil's property has all been transferred to her children and one grandchild with a life estate; she's not on Medicaid, been told she's actually responsible for property taxes but she won't so all the kids and grandchild have each been paying for their portion to keep them from being lost; is that what you mean?
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house was transferred 10 yrs. ago; I'd missed that, so outside of lookback period, so no Medicaid lien, except...it has a life estate on it
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Ward of the state means that a court appointed guardian would oversee Mom's affairs. Her income from social security or whatever would be directed to nursing home care and nothing would be available for home upkeep or taxes or utilities...if children refused to put home up for sale, they would need to come up with equivalent value of life estate as asset of the parent that needs to be used for care that needs to be made available to her. Money transfers that occurred within the last 5 years can be repaid with the value of the house sale less the value of life estate, which would make Mom eligible for Medicaid after spend-down. The guardian would make all choices about where Mom lives, perhaps far away from children. Guardian would make choices about what medical treatment Mom receives absent a health care power of attorney. Guardianship trumps power of attorney, by the way. VERY STICKY and VERY unpleasant if a guardian forces the home sale. If neither child wants the house, let the house be sold and the proceeds repay the CD's that were within 5-year period. The reason for lawyer for all involved? All these disabled persons, possibly on Medicaid themselves, will now have sale assets that may take them over limits. And if house was actually transferred into children's names, how was it kept exempt with the single property exemption for Medicaid? Sticky.
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Igloo when you mention that mom can become ward of the state etc. what does that mean? In my mind it means that mom would " belong" to the state. That the state could move her to wherever they have a bed and are not obligated to discuss her care with her family. Whereas if Medicaid is paying that is also state paying with a federal overlay and while there are rules mom still has some autonomy?
Is that correct?
The gov is paying either way. If state takes over no federal overlay, regulations or family interference? And it would depend on the state she resides in as to how good or bad the care is I am also assuming?
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As others have written, mom needs to discuss options with an elder law atty.

To me, there’s 4 different yet intertwined issues:
1. Mom gifted 2 5k CDs. If done within past 5 years (since 2012), it will show up easily both in banking & tax records, causing 10k transfer penalty. Penalty is basically a math problem: amount of item gifted divided by your states daily room& board reimbursement rate paid to NH by Medicaid. So $175 daily R&B means 57 day penalty in which Medicaid will not pay, so family will need to pay for her stay, IF the atty. cannot get penalty waived.
2. Life Estate & the “We can’t sell it till she dies” is just not true. If it’s an LE, then mom is tenant owner & you / bro are the Remaindermen. Mom still owns & can sell. BUT % of her ownership & share of $ from the sale will need to be determined by what her age is at the time of sale. IRS has actuarial tables for this in Section 7520. It is not simple and imho has to be done by a taxation pro. The elder law atty will have someone they work with to do it. Now selling property poses another gifting issue as you & bros % ownership as Remainder men can possibly also be viewed as gifting by Medicaid with a transfer penalty placed. A lot will depend on how LE was done... like revocable or irrevocable. Again something for mom to discuss with her atty.

3. Medicaid for how most states administer their program allow for the elder to continue to keep their primary residence as an exempt asset for their lifetime. Mom does NOT need to sell her home to be eligible. BUT Medicaid requires mom to do a copay of basically all her monthly income (like her SS) to the NH. Mom will have no funds to pay on any of the home costs..... like taxes, insurance, utilities, etc. Family will need to pay. Now some states allow for empty property costs to be deducted from the Medicaid tally that becomes the MERP amount after death, but it’s totally on family to track & document those costs and in detail. If mom lives for years & years, well costs will mount up and will have to be paid otherwise risk have tax sale happen or uninsured property losses. It sounds like realistically neither you or your brother can afford to take on paying moms house expenses. House can be sold.

Really once on NH Medicaid, it doesn’t matter whether house is in an LE, or a future TOD, Lady Bird Deed, or testamentary Trust, whatever the case..... If you want to have mom keep house then family will need to front all property costs from day 1 of Medicaid and then after mom dies and through whatever MERP, probate, TOD, etc paperwork clears. 
4. Disabled brother - MERP recognizes the situation of disabled heirs and can waive or release a claim or lien against the estate that would be the disabled heirs. But if it’s 50/50 you & bro, then only his 50% gets waived. Unless you also can qualify for one of the many other exemptions or exclusions to MERP (like caregiver or low income exemption). Otherwise estate recovery Lien or claim can still be placed on your share. You can reduce it by doing an exemption from all those costs paid that you kept meticulous records as well as after death costs paid. Again just how to best do this is something to clearly speak with the elder law atty about.

None of this is simple, and why an atty needed.

About what happens if mom can’t pay.  For both my mom & MILs application, the NHs reviewed the supporting documentation required to see IF they (NH) would even take them as a “Medicaid Pending” resident to begin with. For my mom, one document required was a notarized letter from her bank as to the disposition of any CDs, TBills or closed accounts within past 5 years. Fortunately all went into her checking account so fully accountable. But if 2 CDs had been just cashed out, I doubt mom would have been accepted as “Pending” so instead would have had to do private pay rate to live at the NH till Medicaid approved. You may find this is what will happen with your mom. If the $ is just not there, then elders can become a ward of the state, and so state takes over responsibility for moms care and her property. 

Really your situation is complicated & not a DIY; pls get mom to see an atty ASAP and BEFORE she ever does a Medicaid application. Good Luck.
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believe an adult disabled child has to be living in the house
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See an elder law attorney, no other suggestion would be appropriate or helpful. All situations are different. The fact that you are disabled may be able to be taken into consideration.
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Was a caregiver living with your Mother. If so there are laws regarding that caregiver staying on in the house until their death if they choose. I think the caregiver would have to be providing her care for two years to fall under this law. Assuming a caregiver has served he long enough there may be legal issues if you want to sell the house out from under that caregiver. Consult an attorney regarding this if it fits the situation regarding you mom.
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I've re-read all this, looking for the date the house was transferred. Was it within the 5-year look-back period? Why would a woman with little assets give what she does have to her children, including transferring title to her home? Sounds to me like trying to keep money from Medicaid. And, of course there is a way around the life estate. You can all agree to sell the house and use the money from HER house to pay for her care. These plans can backfire, too. Either you or your brother could be the ones now needing care paid for by Medicaid and this house, now in your names, would be a countable asset.
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would there be a problem with Medicaid liening the house; thinking that may end up being what happens with my mil's; she also has a life estate on it with having put all her properties in her children's and grandchild's name
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