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My mother has gone into a nursing home. Medicare is paying for the first 20 days. After this Medicaid will pay? I have shared a home with my mother for years. We have shared expenses. If Medicaid takes all her income how will she pay taxes and insurance on the house. She has other bills to be payed. How does pay her regular bills without this income. I need a place to live.

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As usual, Jeannegibbs gave marvelous, thoughtful advice. You'd need to talk with the Medicaid people in your area, probably through Social Services. They will advise you about the taxes on the house. If the house has your name on it, they would likely expect you to pay the taxes. If not, I'm not sure about taxes either. As Jeannie said, if she has life insurance policies, she will likely have to cash those out if there is cash value, and pay off debt. Please check with your local Medicaid people, as states do vary some on requirements.
Take care,
Carol
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I've been mulling what JeanneG said about "I think the theory is that a person in a nursing home doesn't have many bills to pay."

She's right. But what has happened since the Medicaid regulations were set in place decades ago(1960's?) is that the elderly are living longer both in general and in their NH stay; the cost of health care has more than tripled AND more of them were/are homeowners as these folks were the post WWI housing ownership boom and often have homeowner expenses.

Then add to that, that is seems to be the case of many, many of the posters on this forum is that they are the children of the elder & they live with them as caregivers and really are making their ends meet by having mom or dad's SS income & their parents retirement to use to enable them & often their family to live.
Then when they cannot care for mom or dad, and mom/dad moves into a NH then they find themselves in a total financial and housing crisis.

imho, this is a sexual politics issue - "women's" work is undervalued. Whether it's done by men or women. That's why it is just so important to have everything you do documented and with whatever legal documents done so you are compensated fairly.
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Medicaid requires all monthly income be paid to the NH residents income less whatever their states personal needs allowance ($30 -70) is. No way around it, is Federally required for the state to do in order to participate in Medicaid. The allowance is supposed to be used 100% for their needs - like clothing, hairdresser.
Most NH require the SS check sent to the NH and put the allowance automatically in a trust account at the NH so you never get the $. You can have the SS sent to you and you pay the NH but often need to request it. Some NH require a deposit if you choose to do it this way too.

Now if she still has assets (this should be under $1,500) then you can use that to pay for her % of bills for the house if she is legally a co-owner of the house.

What you are going through is why we hear "the NH is forcing me to sell my mom's house". That's really is NOT what is happening but Medicaid requires that basically all their income be spent towards the NH. If they still have a homestead then family has to either: pay for all or sell the house or let it go into foreclosure.

Upon death, you can file a claim against her estate to be reimbursed for all your expenses for the home (taxes, insurance, utilities) so keep receipts and records.
I think all states allow for this. My mom is in a NH and I and a family member pay for all upkeep for her empty house.

Often this adds up to more than the home is worth, so you get the home and there can be little or no Medicaid estate recovery against the house. Good luck.
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AParker - so sorry for the loss of your dad. I'm sure this all seems so confusing & scary for you.

Here's my suggestions:
1. Your Dad is recently deceased correct? Then get several legal copies of his death certificate.
2. Send letters to whomever has filed a lawsuit or lein or is sending letters threatening a suit or a lein or collection agency action. Make is short and just the facts...like this is to inform you that John Smith is deceased and attached is his death certificate, include in the letter that you are doing this as his POA but since he is dead you no longer serve in that capacity (as POA) and you are NOT responsible for his debts. Do NOT include your phone #. These letters get sent certified mail and with a return receipt card (the green post card at the USPO). These will cost about $ 7.00 per letter to do and will be the best money you've spent. Most companies when they get a death letter with documentation will cease all collection efforts. It may take several months to run it's course. You will get the green card returned with a signature of the recipient - keep this in a safe place. If you have lots of these type of issues to deal, you might want to consider getting a mailbox at a mail or shipping service and use that address for all these issues rather than get it sent to you at your home.
3. Insurance - this is sticky because if your mom is the beneficiary of the insurance policy then the $$ she received becomes "income" and can have her disqualified or suspended from Medicaid as she now has assets over the limit because of the insurance $$. You should see an attorney to see how to deal with this that will work for Medicaid in your state. You really should not pay yourself from the proceeds as that could cause a transfer penalty from Medicaid. Use part of the insurance $ to pay for the legal and then let the attorney guide you on the rest. Good luck.
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As others have said you need good legal advise on all this as so much is dependent on what state you are in.

HoF - This is a tough situation made even more difficult in the current real estate market. I'm assuming the house is negative equity and that the property is only in your mom's name (she is the only one legally responsible) and she lived there by herself (you have your own place). My comments are based on that.........

Do you have any idea of what the negative equity % is? If it's under 10%, then continuing to have it on the market to try to sell it could make sense but imho if it's 20% or more negative, then just walk away from it, or rather your mom just walks away from it. I'd speak to a Realtor to see what comp's are like, what you might be able to realistically get in settlement & why no interest from buyers in 2 years.

Medicaid and the NH doesn't care if your mom doesn't pay her property taxes or whatever on the house. Medicaid wants to make sure that any income she may get (from the sale of the property) is reported & the NH wants to get whatever she is supposed to pay them based on her monthly income.

The property owners association or whomever runs the covenants on the community is going to be mad and there will be a flurry of not so nice demand letters but really what can they do. Mom is in a NH; mom has no assets as she is on Medicaid; they cannot garnish her SS check as that is federally protected income as is most other retirement programs. Yes, they can put a lien on it but so what if they do. She isn't moving back or getting another house or anything else that needs a good credit score now is she.....

When your mom went into the NH and on Medicaid, she or whomever acted on her behalf signed off or did an acknowledgement of MERP - Medicaid Estate Recovery Program. MERP is required by the feds from all the states in order to participate in the Medicaid program. So under MERP upon her death, any assets she has can have a claim or lien placed on them to reimburse the state for the care she got and Medicaid paid. MERP is done differently in each state as it is very much dependent on each state death/probate and estate laws.

If any of her assets are sold or transferred before death, the proceeds from that becomes income and usually required to be paid to the state Medicaid program for reinbursement of their costs. Property transfers are recorded and the state will find out that a property was sold or transferred and the value. This becomes super sticky in dealing with property before death and you need an attorney to deal with it.Because the property owner is on Medicaid, the property in theory has an MERP encumbrance on it. In most real estate contracts, there is a statement in which the seller states to the buyer that there exists something that could affect the sale - for example couple is divorcing, wife gets house and title needs to be changed when divorce is final which may or may not happen before the act of sale OR there is insurance proceeds to replace the roof which is still not spent in full at the time house went on the market. The statement would apply if you go to sell your mom's house as you or whomever would need to disclose the property is subject to MERP. (One of my friends is a Realtor & just won't list a home until the MERP release paperwork is done and in her hands because of title issues as it queers deals.) Your attorney will be able to figure out how to deal with MERP. Good luck.
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I think the theory is that a person in a nursing home doesn't have many bills to pay. Each gets to retain a small amount of their income for personal expenses. Does your mother have charge card bills or other consumer credit amounts she owes? Does she have any assets she can use to pay these debts off, as part of her spend down for Medicaid? For example, if she has a life insurance policy, she could cash it in and pay off debt. She can also use assets to prepay funeral expenses, so that is off her mind.

I know that Medicaid will allow her to keep the house, but I don't know about paying for the expenses to keep it. I hope an expert will be along to give you guidance on this question.

Is the house in both of your names? Were you taking care of her while you were living together?
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I would see an elder lawyer for advice that would be the best you could use her money to pay for this.
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If there is a spouse they are allowed to live in the home until their death but all expenses for the house and any debt the person in the nursing home has if paid by the remaining spouse there is a spousal refusal that can be applied so the remaining spouse gets to keep more money such as a part of the pension of the person in the nursing and the allowance the NH resident gets can be given to the remaining spouse to get treats and such for the resident-you have to watch our NH tried to spend money on clothes that were sold to thr residents by companies that came into the nursing home and there probably were benefits to the NH-my MIL had so many clothes of her own-many of which were stolen by the staff-that money is for the residents like hair appointments and such.
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My mother 'spent' down her assets to go into a nursing home on medicaid, permanently as she cannot be cared for at home.The problem is now she has no money to pay the bills on her house which is in an over 55 community in which she owns the house BUT, not the property.In other words it is a prefab house worth approximately $60,000. She paided land rent for upkeep and use of clubhouse facilities,pool ect.She has probably used up most of that equity in the house the year she has been in the nursing home. My problem is I cannot afford to pay the maintenance fee or upkeep on the house.It has been for sale for 2 years with no perspective buyers. Can medicaid penalize my mother or deny or medicaid benefits if we do not pay the house and the property owner puts a lien against the house? I am afraid if I ( which i can't, I'm on disability myself and live in a one bedroom apt.) don't pay the bills on her land rent and maintenance that medicaid will penalize her if a third party( the land owner) tries to put a lien on the house. Can this happen?
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No Highonfaith. You are not responsible for paying the expenses on the house your mother owns. It is not up to you to maintain its value until the state makes a claim against it to recover some of the money they have paid for your mother's care.

Consider contacting an attorney specializing in Elder Law for advice on the quickest and least costly way to resolve the issues related to the house.
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