These are sometimes called "Transfer on Death" Deeds, or Enhanced Life Estate Deeds. This is a Deed where the Grantor (the Medicaid beneficiary) transfers a remainder interest in property, but retains a life estate, as well as the power to mortgage or sell the property and keep 100% of the proceeds without the consent of the remaindermen, i.e., the persons to whom the property was transferred.
The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (ATRA) was signed into law on January 2,2013. It made permanent a $5 million dollar "estate tax exemption amount", indexed for inflation. (For 2013, the estate tax exemption amount is $5.25 million dollars).
The Texas Constitution protected homesteads from forced sale for 158 years. All that changed on January 1, 1998, when a voter-approved amendment to the constitution took effect. This law allows certain loans to be secured against the equity in a home; such loans are commonly known as home equity loans. If the loan is not repaid or the terms of the loan are not met, the lender may foreclose and sell the home.
"Identity theft is when someone uses your personal information without permission to open fraudulent credit card accounts, access existing accounts, secure loans, and even obtain employment. Criminals go through trash cans, spy on you at ATMs, access public records, and even steal your mail. Previously, criminals stole your wallet for cash. Now they want your wallet to steal your good name. Protect yourself and your identity. "
-- John Cornyll, Texas Attorney General
Oftentimes we are reluctant to make gifts to our children or grandchildren for fear that they will squander the gift and not use it as we would like them to.
The purpose of this letter is to give you some information regarding strategies available to make the most effective use of lifetime gifts, including the annual exclusion, the exclusion for tuition and medical expenses, marital and charitable gifts, and trusts for minors.