Is it possible to put my home into my children's names without them knowing in case I end up in a nursing home?

Asked over 4 years ago - Warren, OH

I am over 60 yrs. old and have had cancer. I cannot afford a nursing home. How else can I protect my home?

Attorney answers (2)

  1. Elizabeth Smith Schmitz

    Contributor Level 14

    Answered . In order for you to put your house into your children's name and make a gift they would have to have knowledge of the gift and receive the gift. There are many problems with putting your home in your children's names and I would not advise it unless you have disucssed this with an attorney who can explain the consequences.

    For Medicaid purposes any gifts must be made 5 years before a Medicaid application or else the gift will be considered an ineligible transfer and result in a penalty period. So if you make the gift of your house make sure that you have enough other assets to provide for any care if you need to go to the nursing home in the next 5 years.

    This is a very complicated area of the law and you should speak with an experienced elder law attorney to assist you.

  2. Justin Jay Watling

    Contributor Level 15

    Answered . I add to the foregoing answer the following:

    Just because your kids might not know about the transfer does not mean that you would not be at risk of losing the home because of something one of them did (or did not do). For example, if one of them gets in an accident and does not have sufficient insurance to cover the liablilty, that person he/she hurt could sue him/her, reciver a judgment, and try to collect it by foreclosing on your home. If one is getting divorced, your home will likely be an asset the soon-to-be in-law will want some share of.

    These are just 2 of the many problems with your suggested course of action.

    Seek the advice of an attorney experienced in the area of medicaid and nursing home planning before you do anything.

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