Q: My husband is 85 and has dementia that turned into Alzheimer’s disease. He also is an alcoholic. A year ago he became violent, aggressive, started exhibiting bizarre behavior, forgetting things on a daily basis, and verbally abusing me. He finally had to go into a memory care home. We have been together for 9 years married for 3. No family on either side. Back in 2011 we went to his lawyer and had his will changed, threw out the old trust and created another trust but only in his name. When we married, everything stayed the same with only a few minor changes. Basically, it states when he passes away everything turns over to me. But I think part of it says he can change anything at anytime. Right now, he is telling everybody at the home how he is going to hurt me, etc. How do I protect my home?
A: My first thought is that he probably does not have the capacity to sign a legal document at this point. You may want to inquire from his doctor if he is in fact competent. If the doctor says no, it may give you some peace of mind. In the event that someone did have him sign something, you would have a good basis to challenge it. In any event, I think you could benefit from the advice of an elder law attorney. He or she can advise you how to shelter this home and other assets from a potential Medicaid claim, should your husband ever need to apply for Medicaid. You should also make an effort to locate and secure this trust agreement so it is not lost or destroyed by another person.