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Hi, Can revocable living trust be revoked in hospice home care, 4 days before death? Can revocation considered valid?

Warren, MI |

I have received a home from my friend initially through revocable living trust. The kids came out with a letter suggesting revocation of trust and a separate quit claim deed signed by my friend 4 days before her death, drafted by kids' attorney. They claimed that the trust is voided and quit claim deed takes the home out of the trust. The circumstances are very suspicious. Can a person revoke trust just 4 days before her death while receiving hospice care for her terminal stage cancer? Will it considered to be valid ? Though she revoked living trust, the will is not revoked, can the will supercede living trust? In case if she revokes the trust, does she also need to make a quit claim deed on same day to take home out of trust? How are my chances to fight this ?

Attorney Answers 4

Posted

Very tough situation. Yes, it can be challenged. Much will depend on the medical records as well as what the role of the attorney was. The attorney may testify against you or he/she may simply have drawn up the documents and not participated in their execution. You will need a skilled probate litigator, in order to have any realistic chance of prevailing. You have potential arguments of lack of capacity and undue influence.

James Frederick

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Posted

The factual circumstances need to be fleshed out but it is certainly suspicious when the revocation in four days before death and the party in in hospice care which means that they are commonly receiving significant dosages of pain medication. All of the paperwork, including the trust, deeds and will should be reviewed, and must be before an opinion can be formed which you could and should rely upon.
I cannot provide a learned guess as to your chances of prevailing for lack of information, but, as stated above, there is very good reason to have the validity of these transfers looked into.

To the PROSPECTIVE client, please call myself or another attorney for your choice with more detaiils and an appointment. My PRELIMINARY answer to your question(s) is for general purposes and based upon what little information you have conveyed. It is based on such limited information that the general answer should never be relied as a reason for your action or inaction. My response does NOT establish an attorney-client relationship and such may only be established by mutual agreement, and the signing of a written retainer agreement, which will generally require payment for our services, as this is what we do for a living and, just like you, we must get paid for our work.. .

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Posted

I agree with the others and additionally unless the will was revoked it would survive.

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2 comments

James P. Frederick

James P. Frederick

Posted

I agree that the Will, if un-revoked, would still apply. Under the limited facts provided, however, the Will would not affect the disposition of the real estate, because the deed supersedes the Will. Additionally, it is likely that the Will was set up as a pour-over Will and that any probate assets would pass to the now revoked Trust. That could create an ambiguity requiring the court to provide directions. Unfortunately, I would not expect the Will to help much.

David B. Carter Jr.

David B. Carter Jr.

Posted

Totally agree if the deeds were not quit claimed back to the deceased and the will was part of a pour over will.

Posted

I agree with my colleagues but write only to add that you need to look very carefully (or more appropriately, have an attorney look at) the POA and the Trust document itself.

Certain POA documents and Living Trusts grant the acting POA/Trustee broad powers as to the authority to transfer property, creat or revoke trusts, etc. These documents are generally drafted in such a way to address potential Medicaid and Estate Recovery issues.

That having been said, even with a grant of such authority to the POA or acting Trustee, the POA or Trustee must, generally, continue to act in a manner that is consistent with the Grantor's (your friend's) intent.

My advice, see an attorney immediately.

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