Can I keep what was given to me?

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Can I keep what was given to me?

Last year my father signed all his
property to mehis eldest daughter as
his caregiver to qualify for Medicaid.
My sister told him she wanted nothing.
My dad died in February and now my
sister wants half, can she take it from
me?

Asked on April 10, 2019 under Estate Planning, Indiana

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

No, she is not entitled to anything your father gave you while he was still alive: regardless of who might inherit what in the future, a person is allowed to gift, give away (or spend, sell, trade, etc.) any of their money or assets, including real estate, while they are alive, and what they do with their assets while alive completely overrules what might have happened to those assets, had the person still owned them, at death. The only way your sister could possibly challenge this would be by showing that one of the following was the case: 1) your father was not mentally competent when he did this, so the transfer is not valid (she would need medical evidence that he was not competenant at the time); 2) you threatened or coerced your father into doing this (and again, would need evidence); or 3) you committed fraud in some way, such as by tricking him into signing the property over or forging his signature (and again, would need evidence).


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