Mom's house is in my name also. How will this reflect on Medicaid if she has to go to NH? - AgingCare.com

Mom's house is in my name also. How will this reflect on Medicaid if she has to go to NH?

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Over 5 years ago, my mother added my name to the deed so that I would be grand-fathered on the tax rate. She's now 89 years old and has been living with me permanently for the past year. I'm hoping to care for her, but if she needs skilled care in the future, and has to go to a NH, will I be required to sell her house? Will this asset be considered hers alone even though I'm on the deed?

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Marie - you have your own home, and then you also have been added to your mom's house....and mom now lives with you & mom's house is empty....is that the situation?

MiddleKid is really spot-on in this.

As Middle said, you really need to see an attorney and not just for the Medicaid aspect. How the deed was done will be concern. If she did it as a Quit Claim...there are issues of guarantee of transfer of ownership that can be a problem. I'm assuming what whatever was done was properly filed at the assessors office and so the annual tax statement shows both your names on the tax bill. You need to take a copy of the filed paperwork, the original warranty deed on the house and all other legal documents of mom's - like her will - to the initial meeting with the attorney. You also want to do in advance a "face" sheet on mom that lists all her data...DOB, marriages, names of spouse(s), full names of all children and DOB. This will save $.

They do not have to sell their home to apply for Medicaid - the home is an exempt asset. But keeping the home will mean that all the costs on the home will have to be assumed by family for the rest of mom's life. Then upon mom's death family can file exemptions for MERP. Medicaid Estate Recovery Program in which the state is required to look into placing a claim or a lein on the assets (their home) after death to recover some of the costs spent on her care. MERP varies due to state laws on death and estates. The house is going to be totally sticky to deal with as things are going to have to be divvied out as to % ownership and you are going to have to provide documentation for that in detail in order to get the exemptions. Really see an attorney and take all the documentation you can to the meeting. Good luck.
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There may be complications as you are both on the deed. Does that give you full rights to the home or are you a partial owner? Is there any debt (or liens) against the home? There are so many questions! Even though there is a 5 year lookback (and that may depend on each state), there are other legal issues to consider including estate issues, etc. When we saw the attorney he brought up several good points to consider and actions to take that we never even considered! It was money VERY WELL spent.
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Yes from what I understand, they do a 5 yr look back, so that means ANY asset transfers: home cash stocks etc....but details yes you need an expert I am not! I do know there is a waiver for caregiver, who has not worked outside the home at all and can prove they were fulltime CGing (doctors statement,etc) can retain the rights to the property. but not anything else. again loose descriptives of stuff I know, get an expert...and if you cant find a lawyer or afford, there are some workshops I have seen thru various senior org's but one I went to they were snrs helping snrs and not really too sharp, sorry if I offend anyone. just careful with the free advise, you get what u pay for (sometimes) good luck and keep us posted..i mite learn something!
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If it has been 5yrs or more you should be safe.
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I agree with MiddleKid, see a lawyer right away. They can answer all your questions and concerns.
From my experience, being on the deed with my mom was absolutely THE worst mistake I ever made in my life and I've made some doozies. I'm still "paying" for this disastrous error with no end in sight. I rue the day I agreed to it.
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Best to speak with an eldercare attorney asap. It will cost you a bit, but SO WORTH IT!
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