How do we remove Mom's name from CDs that she jointly owns with my dad?

1 answer | Last updated: Sep 24, 2016
A fellow caregiver asked...

My mom is in long-term nursing home care, and was recently approved for Medicaid. The Medicaid representative who processed/approved her application told us Mom should remove her name from all her assets so as to prevent Medicaid disqualification next year when her case is reviewed. She wants to remove her name from all bank accounts, IRAs, CDs, etc.

My question is: How do we remove Mom's name from CDs that she jointly owns with my dad? Does she need to sign a relinquishment of ownership?


Expert Answers

Barbara Steinberg is the CEO and founder of BLS Eldercare Financial Solutions, which specializes in helping families pay for long-term care for their loved ones. A registered financial gerontologist, she speaks regularly on the topic of paying for long-term care and is a financial expert for Caring.com.

Depending on which state your mom lives in, she is allowed to have a certain amount of assets in her name after she has been approved for Medicaid. It is usually minimal, like $2,000, but you should check out the number in her state. Regarding the CDs, whose name is first on the joint CDs? If it is your Dad's, then they are being reported under his social security number and it is easy for the bank to take your mother's name off. Either your mother or her power of attorney can sign the bank's form for change of ownership. If your mom's name is first, then you want to change the account to your father's name and social security number. Again, the bank can provide you with the appropriate form to sign. In this case, the bank will have to open a new account for your father.