Cheryl is a top-rated attorney by Avvo and has received several Clients’ Choice Awards for her contributions in Avvo’s Legal Q&A section. View Cheryl’s responses below or view her Avvo profile.
Frequently Asked Questions
More Frequently Asked Questions
Question: Force brother to open a simple estate in N.C.?
“Need to force brother to open an simple estate so i can be paid for burial expenses and other things. He refuses to go to clerk of court to start process and set administrator.”
Answer: “If your brother has not opened an estate and he’s had a reasonable period of time to do so, (several months) then you can go to Court yourself and open the estate or do yourself a favor and hire a Probate attorney to handle the matter for you.
Once you open the estate you’ve incurred another job for at least a year and you won’t enjoy it. I don’t think there’s any such thing as a ‘simple estate’ especially if you don’t know what you’re doing. Be very careful. It may not even make sense to open the estate unless there are assets which will cover the expense of an attorney and paying you back for the burial expenses. Much should be weighed before taking on this job to be paid back for burial expenses.”
Question: I have power of attorney for my mother who is in a nursing home can I sell her house without the state taking the money.
“My mom bought her house in North Carolina and paid cash for it 2 years ago she had a massive stroke which put her indefinitely into a nursing home she needs 24-hour care. She has Medicare and Medicaid which help pay for the nursing home they also take her Social Security pension every month and it goes towards that bill as well. My mother gave me complete power of attorney my question is I need to do something with the house because the property taxes are not being paid can I sell the house and not give the proceeds to the state or to the Medicaid or Medicare or the nursing home how does that work?”
Answer: “You need to see an Elder Law Attorney immediately. Depending on the Power of Attorney there may be a smart strategy to protect the home. However, if the necessary wording is not in the Power of Attorney which allows this strategy then a sale of the home would result in the proceeds from the sale paying to the Nursing Home in lieu of Medicaid until all of the proceeds are gone. Medicaid presently has a lien for monies expended on your mother’s behalf in her home, so money they’ve paid out may be recouped from the home when she passes. Often recovery doesn’t transpire until death occurs because you’re allowed to keep a home to return home to and qualify for Medicaid, but many people don’t know that Estate Recovery occurs when their family member passes. For those reading this who are still competent, please update your Power of Attorney in NC with an Elder Law Attorney so that you have the wording necessary for your family to preserve your home and other assets in this type of situation. (This sentence is the new content)”