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At a pro bono or at a reduced fee? I am a 54 year old caregiver (unpaid) for my 62 year old husband who was diagnosed with Young-onset Alzheimer's in 2008. Our assets have been depleted, as he was fired from his job when he began showing signs of the disease. We live in Las Vegas, NV, where there is no protection for workers.

I am visually impaired, and in desperate need of eye surgery. I had surgery on my right eye, then my Medicaid was cancelled before I could have surgery on my left eye. (We are slightly over the income limit for Medicaid.) This has left us in an extremely difficult position, as we have no family nearby to help us.

I have spent countless hours trying to find an attorney to either set up an irrevocable trust, or petition the court for a division of assets, so that I qualify for Medicaid in order to take care of my own health issues, and take care of my husband. However, despite the recognition Young-onset Alzheimer's (and the effect on the caregiver(s) and family) has received recently, I cannot find anyone to help us.

I found a competent and knowledgeable attorney willing to set up a guardianship and petition the court for a division of assets; but her fee is $2,500. It might as well be $25 million, as we survive solely on my husband's SSDI and have depleted our assets in order to survive.

As far as the Affordable Care Act (which everyone I've spoken with seems to think will help) - I can only afford the Bronze level insurance. While I qualify for a monthly subsidy (which reduces my payments to $15/mo), the deductible is $6,200, so I basically do not have insurance. This means the government sends the insurance company $350 per month, and I still live w/o health insurance coverage.

Any assistance you can provide will be greatly appreciated.

Thank You,
Sherry

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Hope you do get Gabriel Heiser's book, and read it. The 7th edition is most up to date. I also have a further thought, that a Medicaid-eligible nursing home might be able to provide some assistance in getting your husband eligible (assuming he moves in there). Depending on the CRSA and MMMNA amount, you might end ip with more cash available for your own needs. Again, I hope you read that book ("Medicaid Secrets"). I'm not the author nor am I a bookseller--anyone can get this book at their public library.
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Sherry, you could get a complete divorce and Medicaid would still deny the application, ruling that it was done to hide assets. That was the best advice I could get from a lawyer when my daughter got brain cancer. You are not the first person to come up with this idea.
$2500 for Guardianship is rock bottom cheap, the attorney who quoted that is doing you a huge favor. That is less than I paid and I live well away from the high fee circuit.
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There is a good book by Gabriel Heiser, who is an attorney, which you can get at your local public library. It has an excellent overview of the basics on how to qualify for M.A. its not a substitute for a lawyer, but could help immensely to understand the M.A. application process. I suspect you might be able to re-apply for Medicaid and even if denied, seek a Fair Hearing, where you could point out your visual treatment needs and expenses. But ultimately you will need a lawyer, and $2500 doesn't seem too expensive for Las Vegas area. Maybe you can find one who will accept monthly payments, or you could put it on a credit card?
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Call a Dignity Memorial FH in your area. They may know of a local lawyer that they can recommend. They will also have a full fact sheet on resources available in your county. I don't think you need a guardianship. Also: seek out any non-profit free clinic. I'm not saying your needs will be met there, but they may be linked to or knowledgeable of an agency to help you. Re-apply for Medicaid asap. You can get FREE financial counseling with any Primerica office in your area as well. Good luck to you- keep in touch and let us know how you are doing.
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