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My mother-in-law (90) lives in her small house. She has a will naming her two children. I suggested the idea of putting beneficiaries on the house (her only asset) to avoid probate. She agreed. I downloaded the Ohio RC 5302.22 "Transfer on death designation affidavit" from the county website. Has anyone done this? I have also urged a POA and a change of executors (her lawyer is in jail). We provide all the services of assisted living. Down the road may be a nursing home (Medicaid?) They will probably take the house. But if there is no Medicaid nursing home, does the house beneficiary work as described? Has anyone else done this?

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Ohio has new rules. So when you attempt to file the TOD after death, the county clerk will notify Ohio's Medicaid Estate Recovery Program (MERP). MERP will go after the asset, guaranteed. Many states are now reaching beyond the probate process.
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Snow….omg…. "her lawyer is in jail". Really, really pull all paperwork that this now in jail atty ever did for your mom and schedule a meeting with a new elder law atty. Discuss mom's options on the house, a personal care agreement (between mom & you & brother), get a codicil done on her old will (if it were me I'd get this done no matter what as who knows just how far the old atty issues were as to doing things correctly, jeez for an atty to go to jail, and not a sanction is pretty serious stuff) and DPOA, MPOA for your state.

At 90 well the likelihood is that she is going to need a higher level of care than you can provide and need this within the next 5 years. Unless she is the rare, no chronic health conditions type who had her parents themselves live to mid 90's! It sounds like you are already providing "all the services of assisted living". Caregiver burn out is very real. Then it's Hello Medicaid NH! If so, you just want to have a plan on how to deal with her, her needs and her assets and not be all be doing all in panicked rush. Good luck.
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I would highly recommend hiring an "Elder Law" attorney as they can advise about putting assets into a "Trust" which will avoid probate taxes. But one has to make sure everything goes into the Trust. If one stock is left out, that stock goes through probate.

I notice some people prefer to deed the house over to a grown child(ren). One draw back is that if you get the house then the capital gains taxes, when you sell the house, the bases used would be the cost of the house when one's parents bought the house.

If you inherit the house through a Will, then the bases used for capital gains taxes, when you sell the house, is the general market value of the house on the day you inherited the house.

If Mom finds herself in a nursing home and Medicaid is paying for her care, Medicaid will put a lien on the house with the transfer of names on the deed were with a 5 year look back [some States have along look back] and Medicaid will be first in line to collect money for your Mom's care once she passes. If Mom lives for many more years in a nursing home, someone would need to pay the property taxes, utilities, homeowner's insurance [if you can find an insurance carrier who insures vacant houses].

I know, this all can become so complicated.
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I spend a fair amount of time looking into how this can be done, As my Mother's estate is going to be large enough to have probate take a large chunk of money from it.

Basically...the only ways to avoid probate is...1) give it away before you die. 2) have the specific designation "Right of Survivorship" on the title (account or whatever). In some states this is only allowed between husband and wife. In some states it is just real estate that can be restricted...some it includes bank accounts.

I suggest you pick up the book from NOLO press...how to avoid probate...then do a look up of your state laws. OR, get an attorney the specializes in elder law/ medicaid/probate and wills.

It took a good long while to get this set up between my parents, the result was that when Dad died...everything moved to Mom without probate. Quick and smooth transition. Now, I had an attorney help me get it all set up once again between Mom and me. When the time comes I will divide according to Mom's will...but, I will have it all move to me without probate first.

In Colorado, if the total estate is below $60,000 you can avoid probate with a "quick" file. Otherwise lawyers and courts will take a cut if you end up in their hands. The size of the cut gets bigger with the size of the estate.
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