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  • FIRST POST
    Veryannoyed
    Putting home into family trust to avoid nursing home fees
    • #1
    • 15th Dec 11, 9:23 AM
    Putting home into family trust to avoid nursing home fees 15th Dec 11 at 9:23 AM
    I'm afraid I'm not prepared to lose my only asset, my home, to pay nursing home fees so I'm considering putting it into a family trust with my children as the beneficiaries.

    Does anyone have experience of this and the pitfalls?

    We're already likely to lose my mother's home for this reason (her fees are £46,000 a year) and if there is a legal way of making sure our children inherit all we have worked so hard for over the years then we will take it.

    The PCT / social services have been entirely ruthless in the way they have dealt with the family over my mother's case and although we did achieve full funding for her for a while it was quickly removed.

    I'm going to be equally ruthless in preventing them from getting their hands on my hard earned cash.
Page 1
    • alanq
    • By alanq 15th Dec 11, 11:36 AM
    • 3,212 Posts
    • 2,073 Thanks
    alanq
    • #2
    • 15th Dec 11, 11:36 AM
    • #2
    • 15th Dec 11, 11:36 AM
    So you'd rather try to spend other persons' hard earned cash instead?

    If it looks like the trust has been set up for the purpose of avoiding fees it may be treated as deprivation of assets.
    http://www.ageuk.org.uk/Documents/EN-GB/Factsheets/FS40_deprivation_of_assets_in_the_means_test_for_c are_home_provision_fcs.pdf

    Having put your home into trust what happens if you want to sell it and the beneficiaries of the trust don't want you to do so?
    • dzug1
    • By dzug1 15th Dec 11, 1:08 PM
    • 13,270 Posts
    • 6,067 Thanks
    dzug1
    • #3
    • 15th Dec 11, 1:08 PM
    • #3
    • 15th Dec 11, 1:08 PM
    Trusts are a can of worms - they can be expensive to set up, expensive to run and have unexpected tax implications.

    And do you really want to live in the cheapest of cheap homes coz that's all you'll get?

    If you do decide to do this you'll need to go into it in fine detail - who are the trustees, who has the right to live there, who is responsible for maintenance, who sorts things out if they don't/can't bother, how will the trust be wound up and probably several dozen other questions
    • roddydogs
    • By roddydogs 15th Dec 11, 1:43 PM
    • 5,556 Posts
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    roddydogs
    • #4
    • 15th Dec 11, 1:43 PM
    • #4
    • 15th Dec 11, 1:43 PM
    The old threads are the best.
    • midnight express
    • By midnight express 15th Dec 11, 4:07 PM
    • 1,084 Posts
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    midnight express
    • #5
    • 15th Dec 11, 4:07 PM
    • #5
    • 15th Dec 11, 4:07 PM
    What you are suggesting is fraud ie a criminal offence. If set up a trust in order to claim benefit / care home fees you will be treated as if you still have the money.
    • esuhl
    • By esuhl 15th Dec 11, 4:42 PM
    • 5,771 Posts
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    esuhl
    • #6
    • 15th Dec 11, 4:42 PM
    • #6
    • 15th Dec 11, 4:42 PM
    I vaguely remember reading about this a while back. I'm not 100% sure, but I seem to remember that if you could be pursued for care fees if the asset is transferred within six years of your admission to the care home so long as you didn't do this to intentionally avoid fees.

    But if you have committed the thought-crime of trying to avoid nursing care fees, the authorities can bill you.

    If my memory is correct, this creates a strange Orwellian and Catch-22-type paradox where what is criminal is the thought not the actions, and the law is different depending on your knowledge. The more you know about what is legal, the less is legal.

    If you know how the law works and are trying to avoid paying fees, you will have to pay them. If you don't know what you're doing and transfer assets for other reasons, you can avoid the fees. It's one rule for the educated and one for the ignorant. It's the opposite of saying "ignorance is no defence".
    • NAR
    • By NAR 15th Dec 11, 5:37 PM
    • 4,741 Posts
    • 12,601 Thanks
    NAR
    • #7
    • 15th Dec 11, 5:37 PM
    • #7
    • 15th Dec 11, 5:37 PM
    I'm afraid I'm not prepared to lose my only asset, my home, to pay nursing home fees .
    Originally posted by Veryannoyed
    And I'm afraid you will have no choice in the matter!
    • McKneff
    • By McKneff 15th Dec 11, 5:42 PM
    • 34,108 Posts
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    McKneff
    • #8
    • 15th Dec 11, 5:42 PM
    • #8
    • 15th Dec 11, 5:42 PM
    Go and see a solicitor, they will give you the advice you need.

    I saw something on these boards not too long since that only about 1 in ten people who own their homes end in care and even less
    have to actually sell their homes, depending on the care that they need, whether the spouse still resides in the house, etc.
    No one can make you feel inferior without your consent
  • Veryannoyed
    • #9
    • 15th Dec 11, 5:51 PM
    • #9
    • 15th Dec 11, 5:51 PM
    Thanks to the people who have made helpful replies, I'm going to contact a solicitor.

    To the others, my mother is clearly entitled to fully funded care, but despite a four year battle involving solicitors we still can't get it so as we'll be paying over her entire assets (around £300,000) for care home fees at £46,800 a year then no, I certainly don't have any scruples about trying to save my own home.

    At the moment I'm funding every lazy individual and their numerous kids who are living on benefits as a lifestyle choice so it's up to me what I do with my own money. Of course, when they need care in old age, the state (ie my taxes) will pay for that too.
    • Happychappy
    • By Happychappy 15th Dec 11, 6:14 PM
    • 2,583 Posts
    • 2,467 Thanks
    Happychappy
    Thanks to the people who have made helpful replies, I'm going to contact a solicitor.

    To the others, my mother is clearly entitled to fully funded care, but despite a four year battle involving solicitors we still can't get it so as we'll be paying over her entire assets (around £300,000) for care home fees at £46,800 a year then no, I certainly don't have any scruples about trying to save my own home.

    At the moment I'm funding every lazy individual and their numerous kids who are living on benefits as a lifestyle choice so it's up to me what I do with my own money. Of course, when they need care in old age, the state (ie my taxes) will pay for that too.
    Originally posted by Veryannoyed
    Please post how you get on? I am also interested as I have the same views about the scroungers and dossers, of which there are countless, I totally agree your home should not be used, but would be interested to see how or if it can be done? maybe become an MP and claim it on expenses
    • McKneff
    • By McKneff 15th Dec 11, 6:37 PM
    • 34,108 Posts
    • 43,733 Thanks
    McKneff
    Around 10 years ago we had our house changed from joint tennants (where you both own the whole house) to tennants in common (where you each own a half of the house each) meaning that if I die I can will my half to the children. If my OH later on has to have care then they cant actually sell the house because he only owns half. And vice versa. It was put into trust at the same time and the children and the remaining spouse are the executors.

    Solicitor route is best.
    No one can make you feel inferior without your consent
  • Veryannoyed
    I'll report back on how I get on. I'm not sure how we own the property at the moment but like McKneff I have also heard of being tenants in common and this sounds like a suitable option.

    I'm sorry if anyone thinks trying to pass my home on to my children is evading my 'dues' to the state but my mother paid taxes all her life, my father was an army officer who bought his home out of taxed income and I don't see why, when they have never taken a penny from the state except in a small state pension, all their assets should be taken away when other people who have spent all their money get the same care for nothing. It's not going to happen to me if there is any legal way to stop it.
    • pollypenny
    • By pollypenny 15th Dec 11, 9:37 PM
    • 18,115 Posts
    • 45,833 Thanks
    pollypenny
    Bully for your parents, OP. Do you think other people are given their houses?

    My parents bought the house in which we grew up, he was self-funding in a residential home, paying from pensions and capital.

    He didn't ask anyone else to pay for him. If I need to go into a home I won't ask anyone else to pay.

    And I don't want to pay for you.
    Member #14 of SKI-ers club

    Words, words, they're all we have to go by!.

    (Pity they are mangled by this autocorrect!)
  • Veryannoyed
    Bully for your parents, OP. Do you think other people are given their houses?

    My parents bought the house in which we grew up, he was self-funding in a residential home, paying from pensions and capital.

    He didn't ask anyone else to pay for him. If I need to go into a home I won't ask anyone else to pay.

    And I don't want to pay for you.
    Originally posted by pollypenny
    Do you like paying for the lazy lifestyle choice of the sort of people I had the misfortune to catch on the Jeremy Kyle show this morning?

    Personally, I find that a lot more objectionable than the state funding the nursing home fees of a war hero's widow.
  • Errata
    Speaking as the daughter of a war hero and the stepdaughter of another whose mother sat on the dockside in the freezing cold and rain mending anti submarine nets and whose aunt worked in a munitions factory. I know ALL of them would be humiliated expecting the state to pay for their care because their relatives wouldn't look after them, when they were perfectly able to pay for it themselves, which two of them did.
    It's called accepting responsibility.
    .....................I'm smiling because I have no idea what's going on ...
    • Moody Mare
    • By Moody Mare 15th Dec 11, 10:50 PM
    • 113 Posts
    • 96 Thanks
    Moody Mare
    his written wishes is that he would rather see his home blown up that go to keep him. I will not follow his last wish but I will try to protect it through the courts.
    Last edited by Moody Mare; 21-07-2014 at 1:00 AM.
    Returning member as system did not know me anymore
  • Veryannoyed
    Speaking as the daughter of a war hero and the stepdaughter of another whose mother sat on the dockside in the freezing cold and rain mending anti submarine nets and whose aunt worked in a munitions factory. I know ALL of them would be humiliated expecting the state to pay for their care because their relatives wouldn't look after them, when they were perfectly able to pay for it themselves, which two of them did.
    It's called accepting responsibility.
    Originally posted by Errata
    No sympathy needed for me or my relatives.

    I certainly won't feel humiliated when I pass on my home to my children!
  • Veryannoyed
    Bully for your parents, OP. Do you think other people are given their houses?

    My parents bought the house in which we grew up, he was self-funding in a residential home, paying from pensions and capital.

    He didn't ask anyone else to pay for him. If I need to go into a home I won't ask anyone else to pay.

    And I don't want to pay for you.
    Originally posted by pollypenny
    But you're happy to pay for people who choose not to work and to take from the state without paying anything in?
    • IanManc
    • By IanManc 15th Dec 11, 11:11 PM
    • 195 Posts
    • 307 Thanks
    IanManc
    I'm not sure how we own the property at the moment but like McKneff I have also heard of being tenants in common and this sounds like a suitable option.
    Originally posted by Veryannoyed
    No it isn't. It's a legal minefield.

    If half the house is owned by the children then that half is part of their assets. The house could be subject to a forced sale if one became bankrupt, and it counts towards their assets if one divorces. If they don't live there then the children pay capital gains tax on their share when the house is eventually sold. If the spouse who still owns half goes into a home and the house isn't sold at that point then the council simply place a legal charge on the property for the care fees they've paid, and recover the money from the proceeds of sale when the house is eventually sold. Meanwhile the children have to maintain an empty house ....... or if one of them lives in it then they either have to pay rent to the parent in the care home who who owns half the house, which the council will use to pay the care fees, or the council will simply assume that rent is being paid and stop paying a portion of the fees to the home that is equal to the "notional" rent and if you don't like it they'll let you take them to court - where they'd probably win.

    And those are just the obvious pitfalls .......

    Ther really isn't an effective way of the last remaining spouse avoiding the sale of the home to pay care fees. If there was an effective method then the government would legislate to stop it - but they haven't done because a foolproof method doesn't exist.

    Apart from that, less than one in ten homeowners end up in care homes anyway, so it is daft to deprive yourself of ownership of your home when there's at least a 90% chance you'll live in it until you die.
    Last edited by IanManc; 15-12-2011 at 11:14 PM.
  • Oldernotwiser
    I'm sorry if anyone thinks trying to pass my home on to my children is evading my 'dues' to the state but my mother paid taxes all her life, my father was an army officer who bought his home out of taxed income and I don't see why, when they have never taken a penny from the state except in a small state pension, all their assets should be taken away when other people who have spent all their money get the same care for nothing. It's not going to happen to me if there is any legal way to stop it.
    Originally posted by Veryannoyed
    No Family Allowance, no state pension, no Attendance Allowance?

    Pretty unusual, I think.
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