Is it legal with a durable power of attorney to quick claim deed property to myself? 21 Answers as of January 17, 2014

Father gave me durable power of attorney and told me to file a quit claim deed to myself for his house, to get it out of his estate. He wanted me to have his house upon his death.

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The Power of Attorney is able to do anything which is authorized in the document. If there is language in the POA which allows the transfer of real property, the power of attorney is able to transfer the property to himself. If father is still able to sign documents, it may be wiser for him to sign the quit claim deed. It will avoid any implication of impropriety.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 1/17/2014
Sebby Law Office
Sebby Law Office | Jayne Sebby
It may be legal but it sure is going to sound suspicious to everyone else. Have your father do it properly with the assistance of an attorney.
Answer Applies to: Nebraska
Replied: 1/16/2014
Valentina Matiji | Valentina Matiji
I think in this case your action would be seen as abuse of powers and self-dealing under the power of attorney from your father, and you would have a very high burden to overcome in order to prove otherwise. It is much better, in my opinion, to just have your father convey the house to you. There are different instruments for it.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 1/16/2014
Law Ofices of Edwin K. Niles | Edwin K. Niles
Yes, but a title company might have a problem with it, and you want insurable title.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 1/16/2014
Minor, Bandonis and Haggerty, P.C.
Minor, Bandonis and Haggerty, P.C. | Brian Haggerty
If your father has sufficient capacity to make the power of attorney, then he has sufficient capacity to execute a deed. He should do the deed himself. An agent under a power of attorney should never engage in self-dealing. I don't know if I would describe it as "illegal," but it is wrong, bad, and suspicious.
Answer Applies to: Oregon
Replied: 1/16/2014
    Peters Law, PLLC
    Peters Law, PLLC | Mark T. Peters, Sr.
    If the DPOA gives you the authority to transfer property, it is technically legal. However, if you have siblings or he has a wife, etc., there will be a long hard look at the transaction. Why can't dad do it himself if he is competent. If he isn't competent, then his instructions don't really mean anything, do they?
    Answer Applies to: Idaho
    Replied: 1/16/2014
    Gates' Law, PLLC | Thomas E. Gates
    For tax purposes you do not want to transfer the house now. While you can sign as the grantor with the POA, it is better if your dad does so.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 1/16/2014
    Kirby G. Moss PC | Kirby G. Moss
    If the POA includes real estate transactions, which most do, then the answer is yes.
    Answer Applies to: Indiana
    Replied: 1/16/2014
    Richard J. Keyes Attorney at Law | Richard J. Keyes
    In Missouri, there must be language in the durable power of attorney that allows you to make gifts to yourself and not equally to other siblings. If this language is not in the durable power of attorney, an inured party can bring a cause of action to set aside the quit claim deed.
    Answer Applies to: Missouri
    Replied: 1/16/2014
    Ashcraft & Ashcraft, Ltd.
    Ashcraft & Ashcraft, Ltd. | Randall C. Romei
    Assuming the power of attorney for property that names you as agent grants you the authority to deal with the real property of the principal, your father, you have the power to deed the property to anyone, including yourself. The power of attorney would also have to be recorded to show that you did have the authority. As you suspect, a deed to yourself is a prima facia conflict of interest and would be subjected to high scrutiny to determine if you breached your fiduciary duty of loyalty by this action. It would be better if you prepared the deed and had your father sign it in the presence of a Notary Public, thus acknowledging the act. If that is not possible, a written direction from your father directing you to take the action would be recommended.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 1/16/2014
    Law Office of Pamela Braynon | Pamela Y. Braynon
    Sure it is legal to quit claim his property over to you with the POA. However, I would caution him that his homestead exemption will be in jeopardy if the home is out of his name; he would not qualify for the exemption. You can still have the house at upon his death if he leaves a will with you as the beneficiary of the home. To ease his mind you might want to tell him that once declared as his homestead during probate, it becomes exempt from creditors claims (with the exception of the mortgage).
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 1/16/2014
    Elliott Law Firm, PC | Michael K. Elliott
    There has to be a specific gifting provision in the Power of Attorney that allows the agent to make gifts to themselves. If there is not a specific gifting provision in the Power of Attorney, the gift can be challenged, and possibly reversed, at a later date.
    Answer Applies to: North Carolina
    Replied: 1/16/2014
    The Law Office of David L. Leon
    The Law Office of David L. Leon | David L. Leon
    You're going to mess this up. Get a lawyernow. To answer your question, you can use a POA to transfer property, if the POA so allows. You have a fiduciary duty to the power grantor, so you would have to show that you are acting in the best interest of the power grantor. If the power grantor is still living, it's better to have him execute the deed and not you. If it's for Medicaid purposes, make sure you know about penalty transfers. And don't use a quitclaim.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 1/16/2014
    David Kass | David Kass
    You have a fiduciary duty to do act in the best interest of your ward. You are supposed to follow his wishes. While you can deed the prop to yourself, you run the risk of being sued by heirs
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 1/16/2014
    Goldsmith & Guymon
    Goldsmith & Guymon | Dara Goldsmith
    Maybe, but probably not. You are a fiduciary to him as his P of A. Thus you cannot personally benefit. It is possible that it is okay, I.e., you have no siblings, are his only child, and only heir. He is not married and you are named on his will as the sole beneficiary. If those are NOT the facts, then you are violating your fiduciary duty and can be liable for more than just the house. Seek out legal counsel! There may be other options!
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 1/16/2014
    Law Office Of Victor Waid
    Law Office Of Victor Waid | Victor Waid
    No, as you are a fiduciary for the maker of the power and cannot self deal with reference to the assets of the maker of the power.. The only person to transfer the property you refer to is the owner.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/16/2014
    James Law Group
    James Law Group | Christine James
    No. The law is clear that you cannot use a DPA for your own personal gain.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/16/2014
    James T. Weiner & Associates, P.C.
    James T. Weiner & Associates, P.C. | James T. Weiner
    it is legal if it is your father's wishes. but any other heirs may challenge it later. so its better for him to sign it and have it notarized. If you choose to do it have witnesses and written instructions by him to do it.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 1/16/2014
    Law Offices of George H. Shers | George H. Shers
    In general, it is not wise for a parent to give up their home to a child before death. There are numerous tax and other reasons. Your father should speak to a probate attorney before he takes steps that later will cost more money then if his estate is planned out well [e.g., the house takes a stepped up basis on his death if it is part of his estate; if there is a mortgage on the house, it becomes all due and owing on transfer of the property, etc.]. If he still wants you to have title to the house, he could set up a life tenancy so that he does not have to worry about what happens during his life time. He should also read up on what a durable power of attorney means; he can still make whatever decisions he wants to but if he is not in a physical position to sign something or make a decision, then you have the ability to act consistent with what he would want you to do. If there are any other potential heirs, they will suspect you acted improperly in preparing a quite claim deed for yourself.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/16/2014
    Danville Law Group | Scott Jordan
    Is it legal? Probably not. Doing so would likely be seen as self-dealing and breach of your fiduciary duty to your father, regardless of what he told you to do. If he can't sign the Quit Claim Deed, then he probably does not have capacity to make those decisions. (I could be wrong.) Also, if there are any other siblings, doing as you propose will cost a huge fight and cost thousands in attorney's fees. Also, if it is being done to avoid a Medi-Cal lien, the transfer would have no effect. Before doing anything, contact a local estate planning attorney for advice. The small cost of a consult could save the entire estate later.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/16/2014
    Frederick & Frederick PLC | James P Frederick
    No. This would be self-dealing and a breach of your fiduciary duties. Unfortunately, since your father failed to take care of this, I believe you are out of luck.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 1/16/2014
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