If I have the power of attorney over my moms estate, can I sell her home to help pay her assited living bill? 34 Answers as of August 23, 2012

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Law Offices of Gerald A. Bagazinski
Law Offices of Gerald A. Bagazinski | Gerald A. Bagazinski
The short answer is yes. You should have an attorney review the document and advise you of your fiduciary obligations.

Be advised that if your mother is still competent, she could revoke or amend the document. If she is incompetent, an interested party could challenge your authority by filing to become your mother's conservator in Probate Court.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 8/23/2012
Hunter Law Offices, PLLC
Hunter Law Offices, PLLC | S. Christopher Hunter
It depends upon what powers the power of attorney has given you. If it allows for sale of property then yes. However, before you undertake any type of actions regarding paying for long term care you should seek out the advice of a qualified elder law attorney. Failing to do so may cause severe consequences down the road.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 8/20/2012
Law Offices of Charles R. Perry
Law Offices of Charles R. Perry | Charles R. Perry
The answer depends completely on the terms of the power of the attorney. You will need to read it carefully to see what powers it gives you, and whether it allows you to sell your mother's real property. A real estate broker in your area may be familiar with sales based on powers of attorney, and can give you guidance as to how a sale based on a power of attorney is conducted. A correct reading of the power of attorney and whether it allows you to act on your mother's behalf to sell her home, however, should come from an attorney. I would proceed cautiously here, so that no one can ever challenge your authority to make the sale, or claim that you are not acting in your mother's best interests.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 8/20/2012
Candace K Ladley, Attorney | Candace Kay Ladley
If your mother is still alive, you can record with the county recorder the power of attorney and then sell her home to pay her bills. If she has passed away, then the power of attorney is no longer valid. You will either have to file a probate proceeding with the court if she does not have a trust. If she has a trust, you would record with the county recorder an affidavit that you are the successor trustee and then can sell the property. You should consult with an attorney first.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 8/19/2012
The Law Office of Eric J Smith
The Law Office of Eric J Smith | Eric Smith
If your mom is alive, yes. If she has passed away, you will need to go though some form of probate to sell a house titled in your mother's name.
Answer Applies to: Texas
Replied: 8/18/2012
    Leonard A. Kaanta, P.C. | Leonard A. Kaanta
    If the power of attorney gives you that power, yes.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/18/2012
    Rags Beals Seigler Patterson & Gray
    Rags Beals Seigler Patterson & Gray | Ronald D. Reemsnyder
    You should look at the terms of the Power of Attorney- it should state whether you may sell property.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 8/18/2012
    Charles M. Schiff, Attorney at Law
    Charles M. Schiff, Attorney at Law | Charles M. Schiff
    If the Power of Attorney grants you powers without specific limitations, you do have authority to sell a home on her behalf.
    Answer Applies to: Minnesota
    Replied: 8/18/2012
    Victor Varga | Victor Varga
    You don't have a power of attorney over an estate, you have a power of attorney over a living person's affairs. You must mean that you have been appointed the personal representative (executor) of the estate. In that case, you have to use whatever assets are in the estate to pay off debts, so yes, you can sell the home to satisfy debts.
    Answer Applies to: Maryland
    Replied: 8/18/2012
    The Taylor Law Office L.L.C.
    The Taylor Law Office L.L.C. | Ian A. Taylor
    A power of attorney must provide for the specific power to sell the real property. Seek an attorney if you cannot understand the powers provided.
    Answer Applies to: South Carolina
    Replied: 8/18/2012
    Slotnick & Schwartz
    Slotnick & Schwartz | Leonard T. Schwartz
    Look at the power of attorney. It usually gives you the power to sell the home.
    Answer Applies to: New Jersey
    Replied: 8/18/2012
    Martinson & Beason, PC
    Martinson & Beason, PC | Douglas C Martinson II
    Yes as long as that is specified in the Power of Attorney or if it refers to state law which has the power to sale the property. You need to sell it at fair market value, put the money in your mother's bank account and keep track of all the expenses from that account. In the event your mother runs out of money, you will need to apply for Medicaid benefits and they will want 5 years of bank statements to make sure there are no transfers or gifts.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 8/18/2012
    DEAN T. JENNINGS, P.C.
    DEAN T. JENNINGS, P.C. | Dean T Jennings
    If there is the correct and necessary language in the POA giving you the power to sell her residence. It should specifically say that you have that power, if not, you may not have the power to sell her "residence".
    Answer Applies to: Iowa
    Replied: 8/18/2012
    Law Office Of Victor Waid
    Law Office Of Victor Waid | Victor Waid
    Generally yes, but it depends upon the terms of the power of attorney; if she has legal mental capacity, you may want to obtain a specific [poer of attorney as limited to her residence.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/17/2012
    THE BROOME LAW FIRM, LLC
    THE BROOME LAW FIRM, LLC | Barry D. Broome
    If the Power of Attorney grants you the power to sell her property you can sell the home and use the money for HER car and her care only. Your financial plan is not complete until it is co-ordinated with your estate plan. Will your family be provided for when you are gone? Without a Will, the court will decide.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 8/18/2012
    Minor, Bandonis and Haggerty, P.C.
    Minor, Bandonis and Haggerty, P.C. | Brian Haggerty
    Yes, if the POA is properly drawn and can be recorded in the county records. Be aware, though, that this can be a traumatic step for an elder. If your mom is compos mentis at all, try to ease her into this idea.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 8/18/2012
    Gates' Law, PLLC | Thomas E. Gates
    No, the Power of Attorney is only valid while she was living.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 8/18/2012
    Law Offices of Frances Headley | Frances Headley
    It depends upon the powers granted in the power of attorney. You should consult an estate planning attorney to review the document and advise you.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/18/2012
    Frederick & Frederick PLC | James P Frederick
    Yes. You can do anything that your mother would legally have been able to do, as long as it is for her benefit.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/18/2012
    DOUGLAS A. TULL, P.C.
    DOUGLAS A. TULL, P.C. | Douglas A. Tull
    I think you need to sit down with an attorney who specializes in elder law. The house may be an excluded asset for purposes of qualification for Medicaid - but in answer to your question directly, if your power of attorney gives your authority over real estate matters, you may be able to do so. After consulting with an elder law attorney - if he/she says it is OK to sell, then you should have a real estate attorney review your power of attorney - and perhaps share it with a title insurance company to see if they will insure the deed you would have to provide as your mother's agent.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/18/2012
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC | John F Brennan
    Probably, but it will depend on the language of the document. You should seek counsel.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/18/2012
    Pingelton Law Firm | Dan Pingelton
    Yes, although at all times you have to handle matters prudently and carefully, and in your mother's best interests.
    Answer Applies to: Missouri
    Replied: 8/18/2012
    Edward L. Armstrong, P.C. | Edward L. Armstrong
    It depends on what the power of attorney says.
    Answer Applies to: Missouri
    Replied: 8/18/2012
    James Oberholtzer, Attorney at Law
    James Oberholtzer, Attorney at Law | James Oberholtzer
    Yes, you can sell her home; however, the buyer or the title company may insist that the land being sold be specifically described in the Power of Attorney. Also, it may not be a good idea to sell her home. Her home may be treated as an exempt asset for Medicaid payment purposes. The government may pay for her assisted living charges even if she keeps her home. That way she has an asset and may be able to return there someday.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 8/18/2012
    O'Keefe Legal Services, L.L.C.
    O'Keefe Legal Services, L.L.C. | Sean P. O'Keefe
    If the Power of Attorney document grants you, the agent ("attorney-in-fact"), the authority to sell your mother's (the principal's) real property (home) while she is living, then you may have that authority to pay her costs for assisted living. Look in the document for language granting the authority.
    Answer Applies to: Maryland
    Replied: 8/18/2012
    Law Offices of Michael N. Stafford | Michael N. Stafford
    If the PA granted you the power to sell her real property and if the PA is in recordable form you may be able to sell her property. You may have to consult with an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/18/2012
    Timiney Law Firm
    Timiney Law Firm | Leigh Anne Timiney
    It depends upon what type of power of attorney you have been granted. If you have a health care power of attorney, this allows you to make health care decisions only on your mother's behalf. If you have been granted a general power of attorney, this is the type of document which would allow you to step into your mother's shoes and make business decisions on her behalf, which could include selling her home. This also is dependent upon the wording of the specific power of attorney document and what has to happen to give you this authority. Some power of attorney documents are blanket documents, which give the grantee, or attorney. power at any time. Others are called "springing" power of attorney documents which give the grantee authority when a specific act happens, such as your mom becoming incapacitated and being unable to manage her business affairs on her own. If you are unsure, I would suggest you contact an estate planning attorney or civil attorney in your area and seek a consultation.
    Answer Applies to: Arizona
    Replied: 8/18/2012
    Whiteford, Taylor, & Preston | Edwin Fee
    If your mother is deceased (your use of the term "estate" seems to imply that), then the power of attorney is no longer effective. If your mother is alive, then you have the powers that were granted in the power of attorney, which might or might not include the power to sell the home.
    Answer Applies to: Maryland
    Replied: 8/18/2012
    Gorman Law Group, P.C. | Troy T. Gorman
    You should consult an attorney that specializes in Medicare elegibility. There are ways to protect her assets while also getting coverage for her care.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/18/2012
    Grace Ronkaitis | Grace Ronkaitis
    Generally, yes. It depends on the powers that you have been given in the document. Take the power of attorney to the title insurance company that you will be using for the sale to determine if they will accept it (insure over it) before proceeding with the sale.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/18/2012
    Law offices of Ron Webster | Ronald S. Webster
    Yes....provided the power of attorney is executed with the same formalities as are required with a deed (two witnesses in addition to the notary). Additionally, the power of attorney must specifically provide language that the holder is being granted the power to convey real estate. Provided both elements are present the answer is yes.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 8/18/2012
    Horn & Johnsen SC
    Horn & Johnsen SC | Dera L. Johnsen-Tracy
    Provided the power of attorney document specifically provides you with the power to sell real estate on your mother's behalf, then you should be able to do so. However, if the document does not specifically provide you with this power, then you may need to have a new power of attorney drafted and signed by your mother (if she is competent). If your mother is mentally incapacitated, then you may need to initiate a guardianship proceeding on her behalf.
    Answer Applies to: Wisconsin
    Replied: 8/18/2012
    Richard J. Keyes Attorney at Law | Richard J. Keyes
    Check to see if the power of attorney gives you the right to sell the real estate. Also, does the power of attorney give you the right to use it now or do you need one or two affidavits from doctors that your mother cannot handle her affairs and that you therefore can use the power of attorney (this type of power of attorney is called a "springing" power of attorney).
    Answer Applies to: Missouri
    Replied: 8/18/2012
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