If I sign my house over to my daughter, how do I get the sale proceeds?

Q: If I sign my house over to my daughter, can she sign something that says I would receive all proceeds from a sale? I am a senior who lives in an assisted living facility. I have a house that I am trying to sell and I am also concerned about costs. I thought about putting the house in my daughter’s name, making her the responsible party for these costs. Is there a way she can sign something that legally says I could receive all proceeds from the sale of the house?

A:  The simple answer is yes, and the best way to protect you is to have an attorney prepare a mortgage note and mortgage instrument to file with the court. However, this is not a simple question. If you are elderly, and there is any chance that you may need to apply for Medicaid in the future you may want to consult with an elder law attorney versed in Medicaid law. Medicaid has a five year look back on all transfers of property without consideration (i.e., gifts to relatives) and Medicaid could rule you ineligible because of such a transfer. Also, understand that many realty taxing bodies like school districts and counties offer discounts to senior citizens which may be rescinded if title is transferred. You really need to sit down with an attorney and discuss your options.

If you feel like this issue relates to you, or a problem that you are experiencing, please contact me so that we can discuss your situation.