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I am having trouble getting her on Medicaid. Can they hold me responsible for her outrageous Hospice bill?

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Gorgenous, the bill is for the nursing home, not Hospice.

The nursing home needs monthly payments either by your Mom out-of-pocket, or from Medicaid [which is different from Medicare]. Did Medicaid tell you why your Mom is having trouble being accepted by Medicare?

The nursing home automatically will send out rent-due notices. Just curious is the nursing home a Hospice Nursing Home? Did anyone explain how the expenses work? That your Mom is responsible for the monthly rent?

I know, all of this can be complex at a time when it hard to think straight when a love one needs such care.
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GiGi2U2 Jan 5, 2020
Youre exactly correct. NH usually take the monthly SS check pension or whatever patient receives.If that is being used simewhete else this is why tbey are asking for payment. Its that simple. Your love one was receiving some type of income where is it being used? If it doesnt cover the monthly bill I believe that is where medicaid will kick in if the person doesnt have any assets....ijs
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Hospice is covered by Medicare (also covered by Medicaid)
If they are billing for services she received while on Hospice (services covered by Hospice) they are double billing.
Ask the Hospice for a breakdown of what they did on what days and what supplies and equipment they covered.
Deduct any of that from the facility bill.
(You could even ask the Social Worker from Hospice to help you out with this, it would be very easy with the EMR (electronic medical record) that they have to cross reference each day that you are being billed for.
And
This is your mothers bill to pay not yours.
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rovana Jan 5, 2020
I think the problem may be the facility bill - the room and board.
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No.

Bill collectors use scare tactics. The minute you pay, you become responsible and they use that knowledge against you.

It is not your bill. It is not your responsibility.
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rovana Jan 5, 2020
I'm going to assume that when OP asked if they had to pay the bill, they were talking about paying from their own funds, not as a POA/fiduciary from the elder's funds.  Two different things.
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As mentioned in one prior response, some states have "filial responsibility" laws that require family members to foot bills for parents. This does not require the person named as POA for any reason to pay the bill.

Many people have their lawyers or bankers or trustee as POA. Those parties pay bills and make decisions on behalf of the elder, but they are not PERSONALLY liable for the bills. Bills are paid from the elder's resources. On the contrary, if you live in a "filial responsibility" state, children of the elder can be held personally responsible for things like nursing home bills, even if they don't hold POA. These laws exist since those states with filial responsibility laws feel that the state taxpayers should not food bills for individual elder care. Google if your state is a "filial responsibility" state to see what your obligations are.
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worriedinCali Jan 4, 2020
As I said below, Filial laws are totally irrelevant here. Very few states actually enforce filial and the OP is NOT in one of those states! She is not responsible under filial law!
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You responsibility as the POA is to pay her bills out of her funds. If there is no money, then you are not responsible. Who applied for Medicaid you or the Nursing Home? If you, call Medicaid and ask what the problem is. Maybe they don't have all Moms info to complete the application. Were they given 5 years of bank statements? Did u get a drs. letter saying Mom needed 24/7 care? I was given a list of things I needed to present. I had 90 days from the time I applied to get the info to them and set Mom up in LTC and spend down her assets. If this isn't done in 90 days, you have to start over.

If the NH is helping you, then you need to find out what they have been doing. The bill is sent to you because ur the person of record. You need to sit down with the finance person and explain the situation. Moms SS and any pension should at least go to offset the cost. They will have to once she is on Medicaid.

Medicare pays for Hospice care. The Nurse, aide, Depends, wipes, medicine and other supplies. It does not pay for the facility.

Really need more info on how you applied for Medicaid. There is an income cap. In NJ it has to be under 2300. If Mom is over the cap then you need to find a way to put the xtra money into something like a Miller Trust. (Its called something different in different states)

You need to keep on top of the Medicaid caseworker. I did everything by email requesting he verify receipt of the info. When I did what needed to be done, I contacted him by phone. Told him money was spent down, Mom was in LTC under private pay and he had all the paperwork needed. I started the application in May and Medicaid started July 1. Mom was able to pay 2 months up front.
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worriedinCali Jan 3, 2020
Joann they are in California and medi-cal doesn’t require 5 years of bank statements. There is an income cap in every state.
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POAs are not responsible for using their own funds to pay bills.

It's alarming that you are getting any bill at all for hospice care; Medicare pays all hospice care. If she is in a SNF as a private-pay resident she might still be responsible for that, but she might not even be responsible for that bill. If she has her own funds she would have to pay these down before Medicaid kicks in. Check with your state agency and with Medicare re any hospice bill.
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rovana Jan 5, 2020
Misunderstanding: Medicare pays for Hospice Services, but if patient is in a facility then room and board are considered separate from hospice services and aren't covered.  Lots of potential for confusion here.
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POA’s aren’t financially responsible/liable. What matters here is if and what you signed and how you signed it. As long as you signed as POA on your moms behalf, you aren’t responsible. Why are you having trouble getting her on medi-cal?
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Jasmina Jan 3, 2020
The family/children can be responsible depends on the state you live in. My state, oh yes they can. Nursing home bill wasn't paid. 2yrs later no probate. Sibling doesn't care. Lawyer for nursing home wants their money. So yes they can. Just dont ignore and tell them. They might have suggestions on how to help. Or maybe the social worker. They are good people. They might know a thing or two of what to do.
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No, unless you personally co-signed for her Hospice.
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I am assuming that your mother is on Medicare. If that is the case you may want to call them and run this pass them. In general, Medicare does not pay for room and board (which in NJ runs about 275-300 per day) if you are on hospice and reside in a NH. There could be extenuating circumstances for short term hospice which is why I suggest you call them first. As you know, Medicare pays for skilled nursing and/or rehabilitation - hospice is neither so the room and board in this case would be the resident's obligation as a private pay if she is not yet on Medicaid. If you signed as PoA, you are not responsible to pay out of your personal funds but should Mom pass on, the payment would have to come out of her estate.
Please let us know what information you get about this as it can be quite confusing. Hugs and prayers to you
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Reply to geddyupgo
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Probably. I am in the sort of the same boat. It is nursing home for me, not hospice. Depends on your state. Try paying something on it monthly, so they see that you are trying. Call them up and tell them the situation. Dont ignore it. Maybe they have suggestions. I'm sure your not the first person this has happened to.
Get someone to help you with the Medicaid paperwork or call the #numbers too see if there is anything they can do. Tell them your situation.
Can you get her out of hospice if she is in the wing of the hospital? They have hospice folk come out to you, or a efficiency somewhere that would be cheaper than a hospital room. Those costs are outrageous. Good luck.
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GiGi2U2 Jan 5, 2020
Youre right....they should bring them home if monthly money is being used to maintain the home but youll still be responsible for what is owed. Im really surprised that the hospice NH or whatever let the bill accumulate this high without sending the patient home.
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