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We have sold mom's house. We are spending down her cash from the sale of her house so that we can soon file for Medicaid coverage. Eventually we will need to get her into an assisted living/memory care facility, when the time comes.
All of her household, personal items, like furniture, collectibles, etc. are currently in storage. We haven't found a need to sell any of them as of yet.
When she passes and we sell those items, will Medicaid require that we pay them back using the proceeds of the sale of her personal items?
This is one area that I have not received clarification on.
Thanks for your replies in advance.

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You all sold the house & are using the proceeds from the sale as her "spend-down", correct? That is what your state Medicaid program is going to be looking at as all real property information is in the tax assessor & state's database.

The money from a tag sale of the items from the house really wouldn't have come to much….I would imagine these are more sentimental objects. Now if these are true antiques that you could consign to a gallery for a sale, that is different … but mom probably doesn't have a framed Matisse or a Mallard bed in storage now does she! Medicaid probably will have a ? on the recurring charge of the storage unit, if mom is paying for it and it appears on her bank statement. I would suggest that you or another family member be paying for the unit so that it doesn't show up on mom bank statement (& therefore will be seen by Medicaid when she applies & has to include months or years of banking). As an aside I have 2 storage units for my business & according to the place where I am, about 20% of the units within the 1st year get "red locked" for non-payment. You want to make sure that whomever in the family is responsible for paying for the unit is doing so. Personally, I'd do a list of all the major items in the unit and tell family that by "x" date everything needs to find a new home or will be donated to charity..now there will be someone who will be unhappy about this or feel slighted but you can't please everybody (especially in-laws).

About the proceeds from the house, you do want to use some of that $ to buy things for her future. It doesn't all have to go to pay the NH or AL. If mom needs dental work (practically non-existent on Medicaid), use some of the $ for that. For my mom it was thousands of $$'s on dental spent before she applied for NH Medicaid. If mom doesn't have a prepaid funeral & burial policy, by all means use some of the house $ to get this done. It just needs to be all prepaid NCV (no cash value), and the FH will know how to do this so that no Medicaid issues. Some states have a cap on the FH costs, so ask about that.

Also you can prepay for magazine subscriptions for a couple of years. If mom doesn't have a wardrobe that works for the heavy duty laundry that is @ NH & AL, then buy her new clothes. And buy extra's and put into the storage unit. My mom's once lovely wardrobe was pretty well trashed within her first year, the high heat and disinfecting detergent is brutal on all but heavy duty cottons, if I'd known i would have bought lots more clothes and just stored them. Ditto for shoes.

Also you can buy her a new walker & look for the ones with a seat and that has storage (HUGO is a popular brand & Costco / Sam's has these), the ones on Medicaid are just basic. Also get her a new hearing aid and new eye glasses, again these are iffy on Medicaid. More than 1 pair of glasses as these get lost. All totally legit spend-downs as these are things for her care and her needs (even if in the future). Good luck Pink!
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They are her personal items because she is alive and still using them. When she dies, they are assets of the estate, just like any other item of value.
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I have been told that personal items are not considered in the "assets" of a person for qualification for Medicaid and are not considered in the spend down portion of her assets. I have all the receipts for everything that has been spent of her money in the past and feel I won't have any issue getting her qualified for Medicaid.
I realize that Medicaid will ask for the proceeds from any real estate but I was not sure they would seek reimbursement from the sale of her personal items.
I'm wondering if it would be better to disburse her personal items to each of the 8 siblings that I have or if we are better off selling them, and if we sell them after she passes will Medicaid seek reimbursement.
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Keep a detailed account of what you sold and where the money went. If there are any discrepancies, such as withdrawals of cash with no receipts, they will deny her. Do not give gifts to charity or even family, all this counts against her. Medicaid will claim the proceeds, even after death. The Executor of her estate is responsible for paying all her bills, including Medicaid and the Nursing Home. Get a complete inventory of the items in storage, including the fair market value of each. They may be part of the spend down, check your state's rules.
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