All good questions. In most cases when a house is co-owned, ownership will pass to the surviving owner when one passes away. So just in case your mother passes away before your father, the entire ownership of the house should be transferred to her in order to protect it from a Medicaid claim for reimbursement. As you suggest, your mother also would be well advised to update her will, either bypassing your father entirely or creating a trust for his benefit. What makes most sense depends on your parents’ circumstances and the laws in your state. I strongly recommend that you consult with a local elder law attorney to determine the best approach.
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