Portland, OR asked in Estate Planning, Family Law, Elder Law and Health Care Law for Oregon

Q: Why is it that only a child can inherit a house, not a grandchild who has kept grandparent out of nursing home 2 years?

I have been caregiving for my grandmother for 2 years this July and have thus kept her out of a nursing home. Even when we reach the two year mark she can't transfer the house to me just because of the technicality that I am a granddaughter and not a son or daughter. Her only living child has done nothing for her care and this law seems completely unreasonable. It should be any family member who steps up and takes on the role, as the savings to the government is exactly the same. Is there any way to fight this injustice?

1 Lawyer Answer
Kenneth V Zichi
Kenneth V Zichi
  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • Fowlerville, MI

A: Who told you this? PROVIDED your grandmother is of sound mind and she WANTS to leave the house to you, she can. If she wants to give the house to charity she can do that too. If she wants to give the house to the local fire department so they can burn it down as a training exercise she could do that too. There is no 'law' that requires giving anything to anyone.

If you mean she can't 'give' it to ANYONE because that gift would make her ineligible to receive Medicare, then your question is a lot more complex than it looks, and your grandmother should consult with a local estate planning / real estate attorney to determine what she CAN do to insure preservation of assets and distribution after death in the way she wants.

-- This answer is offered for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice or create an attorney/client relationship.

I am licensed to practice in Michigan only. Please seek competent local legal help if you feel you need legal advice

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