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I deeded half my house to my lesbian lover two years ago. She left me and wants half my house. Can I set aside the deed?

East Hampton, NY |

My health was bad and I was afraid she'd be left with no home. My intent was really to leave it to her upon my death, not while I'm alive. She left me. We were together only 4 years. We are both 73. She has another apt. where she lives now. She never helped me with the house or provided any help, cleaning or any consideration. Can I set aside the deed for fraud because she never gave me any consideration, and never fulfilled her promises to help with the house? For any other reason?

Attorney Answers 7

  1. Those are really tough questions. If you voluntarily and of your own free will gifted a one-half interest in the property to your partner, you may not have the right to rescind the gift. If the transfer was conditioned on your partner performing services that weren't performed, you may have the potential right to attempt to rescind--but it could be extremely difficult to prove--especially if there's nothing in writing concerning promises/conditions, etc.... You should consult with a real estate litigator on this matter.

  2. I agree with Mr. Wurtzel. A gift once completed cannot be rescinded.

    If this answer was helpful, please mark it as helpful or as a best answer. This answer is for general education purposes only. It neither creates an attorney-client relationship nor provides legal guidance or advice. The answer is based on the limited information provided and the answer might be different had additional information been provided. You should consult an attorney.

  3. Lack of consideration does not equal fraud. It sounds like you made a gift that you now regret. I don't think you can do anything but I suggest you have a consultation with a real estate lawyer.

    I am a former federal and State prosecutor and have been doing criminal defense work for over 16 years. I was named to the Super Lawyers list as one of the top attorneys in New York for 2012 and 2013. No more than 5 percent of the lawyers in the state are selected by Super Lawyers. Martindale-Hubbell has given me its highest rating - AV Preeminent - in the areas of Criminal Law, Personal Injury, and Litigation. According to Martindale-Hubbell”AV Preeminent is a significant rating accomplishment - a testament to the fact that a lawyer's peers rank him or her at the highest level of professional excellence." Fewer than 8% of attorneys achieve an AV Preeminent rating. I also have the highest ranking – “superb” – on Avvo. The above answer, and any follow up comments or emails is for informational purposes only and not meant as legal advice.

  4. Once a gift is completed, then it is final. If there was fraud, then you have a shot. But no basis of fraud stated.

    If this answer is helpful, then please mark the helpful button. If this is the best answer, then please indicate it. Thanks. For further information you should see an attorney and discuss the matter completely. If you are in the New York City area, then you can reach me during normal business hours at 718 329 9500 or

  5. Sounds like a gift. I'll bet you saved a few hundred dollars drawing up this deed yourself. Too late now but an attorney would have been a good investment before handing over 1/2 your house.

    Legal disclaimer: Disclaimer: This answer does not constitute legal advice. I am admitted in the State of New York only and make no attempt to opine on matters of law that are not relevant to NY State. This advice is based on general principles of law that may or may not relate to your specific situation. Facts and laws change and these possible changes will affect the advice provided here. Consult an attorney in your locale before you act on any of this advice. You should not rely on this advice alone and nothing in these communications creates an attorney client relationship.

  6. Any chance she'll give it back? Ask nicely.

    NOTE: (1) I may be guessing and/or not even licensed in your state; (2) We have not established an attorney-client relationship; (3) Sometimes you get what you pay for; and (4) If you want to send me a gift, my favorite color is orange.

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