Can a Grandchild Qualify Under the Caretaker Child Exception for Transfers?
August 23rd, 2018
On the advice of my mother's attorney and because of my mom's advanced dementia, we were encouraged to transfer the title of her home to my sister, my brother, and me equally. My sister's son, moved in with mom over two years ago to provide basic in-home care and security for his grandmother. Over the past several months mom's dementia progressed to the point that she could not take care of her personal hygiene or dress herself. At that point we were encouraged to find a nursing facility with an Alzheimer's wing or section. We selected a reputable place for her and have been paying over $4,400 a month out of pocket toward her $6,400 a month nursing home bill. Her income of $2,000 covers the balance. The house has been on the market for five months with no one interested in buying it. Can we transfer the house to her grandson, as he was her live-in caregiver up to that point? Would he qualify as a "child caregiver”? Are we stuck trying to sell the house with no relief until the house is sold? Can we deed the house to the state? How do we proceed? We live in Georgia.
In most, if not all, states your nephew will not qualify as caretaker child. This is because the exception to the usual transfer penalty is strictly construed to apply only to children of the nursing home resident. The only reason that I’m leaving a sliver of hope that he might qualify for the exception is that I’ve heard rumors of exceptions around the country. You will need to check with a Georgia elder law attorney to be absolutely certain. Here is a list of attorneys in Georgia: http://www.elderlawanswers.com/georgia-elder-law-attorneys. The attorney can also advise you on the best strategy going forward. From what you’ve written, it’s not clear to me why Medicaid is not already covering the cost of your mother’s care.
For more on the caretaker child exception, click here.
Daniel N. Steven is an attorney licensed in Maryland and the District of Columbia. with many years of experience in complex estate planning and Elder Law. He is rated by Martindale-Hubbell as an AV Preeminent 5.0 out of 5 rated attorney.
Ron M. Landsman has been practicing elder law since 1983, before it was known as elder law, originally with Landsman and Laster, Washington, D.C., then Landsman, Eakes and Laster, also in Arlington, VA, and since 1990 in his own practice in Montgomery County, Maryland. He has been among the most active members of the...
Attorney Samantha Simmons Fredieu is an associate at Hale Ball. Ms. Fredieu graduated magna cum laude from Vermont Law School where she was the symposium editor on the Vermont Law Review, a production editor on the Vermont Journal of Environmental Law, and a member of the Moot Court Advisory Board. She has clerked for...