No, your child cannot take your home from you. Naming someone as the recipient of your property, even your house, in your Last Will and Testament does not give them any right to that property while you are still living.
The Person Who Has Title to The Home Has Control Over It
If you have title or legal ownership of your home, you have full control over how the home is used. You can choose to live in, lease, mortgage, sell, gift, refinance, or do anything else with your home. When you purchased the home, you received these legal rights to it through the deed. The deed proves you are the owner. You have title to your property through the deed and, therefore, have full rights and control over its use.
Your Will Only Comes into Effect Upon Your Death
A Last Will and Testament has no legal significance until the time of your death. It is a legal document specifying what happens to your accounts and property upon death.
A will does not affect who owns your property during your lifetime. It does not change the title to your property. Naming your child (children or anyone else) the recipient of your home in your Last Will and Testament does not give them ownership rights of your home until after you have died.
As long as you are mentally competent, you can change your will at any time. This further supports the reason why a child cannot take your home while you are still alive.
Points to Consider
If you are passing ownership of your home to your child through your Last Will and Testament, they will almost certainly have to go through the probate process.
Some people put their child’s name on the deed to their home to avoid the probate process. Doing so makes them co-owner. They intend to continue living in the home throughout their lifetime and have their child assume full ownership upon their death.
It is important to recognize that if you put your child’s name, or anyone else’s name, on your deed, they become co-owner with all the same rights to use the property as you have. They can also live in, lease, mortgage, sell, gift, refinance, or do anything else with your home.
Passing your home to your child upon your death by naming them as the recipient in your will does not give them the authority to take your home while you are alive. However, making them co-owner by putting their name on the title gives them, and their creditors, this power.
Contact us to learn about other ways, such as a transfer-on-death title or a revocable living trust, to transfer your home to your child upon your death. These legal instruments can help your child avoid the probate process while allowing you to retain full ownership of your home throughout your lifetime. We can help you with this and help you develop an estate plan that meets your needs and goals. Call: 855.631.3457