Vermilion, OH asked in Estate Planning for Ohio

Q: How do I file a POA in Erie County, Ohio?

POA is in a trust. Mother is now in a nursing home in their memory unit. Trying to sell her home to be able to pay for her future nursing home bills. Actually, already have it on the market. Do I need to stop everything until this is secured from the county?

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2 Lawyer Answers
Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst
PREMIUM
Answered
  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • Crossville, TN

A: “POA is in a trust” does not make sense. If the house is in your mother’s name AND if the POA contains the proper authorities, the agent named in the POA can sell the house. Usually the original POA instrument itself is recorded in the local land records to prove authority.

If the house is in a trust AND if the trust instrument gives the trustee the proper authorities, the trustee can sell the house. Usually a certification of trust is recorded in the local land records to prove authority.

HOWEVER, you might not have to sell the house in order to pay for her care. Do yourself a huge favor and hire an experienced elder law attorney to help you with this. An elder law attorney might be able to help you arrange things so that Medicaid pays for your mother’s care without selling the house or without spending ALL of the proceeds on her care. And he or she can often also help with the logistics of selling the house if that ends up becoming part of the strategy.

Andrew Popp
Andrew Popp
PREMIUM
Answered
  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • Ravenna, OH
  • Licensed in Ohio

A: I agree with Ms. Whitehurst. Is the home in a Trust or no? If so, the Trust provisions will specify the authority of the Trustee to alienate real estate. If the real estate is not in the Trust, then the Trust provisions do not apply. The POA will have specific terms spelled out regarding what authority was granted by the principal (mother). If the POA authorizes you to sell real estate, additional requirement, (such as filing with the county), is required before you can sell the residence. Ultimately, it may not even be necessary to sell the residence. I suggest sitting down with an attorney who practices estate planning and Medicaid issues to review your situation in detail.

Best of luck.

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