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I have a few checking/savings account approx $20,000 do I put it in a safe deposit box or some other kind of bank account that I won't lose and can give to kids/grandchildren after I pass.

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One of the few things you could do might be to buy life insurance policies with no cash or face value, payable to your heirs. Or, there might be some ways to set up donor directed funds/charitable trusts with some of that money. Do make sure you have a burial policy - that is an exempt asset; it typically has to be irrevocable and used for funeral expenses only - but then at least that expense will not fall to your heirs.

You don't say what your health status is like or how likely it is you will need long term care, or how soon, and that could make a difference too. I do now a family where they mom and dad put the house in their son's name well before the look-back period and everything was very smooth financially for him when they passed, though his grief was as great as anybody's. .

But your best bet is going to be paying for an eldercare legal consultation or estate planned who is familiar with Medicaid to help you determine what is and is not legitimate to do for yourself and your family.
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repugnant shplepugnant . there are about 30 % of the US population living on handouts to include housing and free medical . if a working taxpayer can find a way to keep hold of some of their assets im all for them . its more like ; working / saving people lose their assets to provide medicaid for the benefit scroungers with no assets to declare .
NEVER put your excess money in the banks . any legal thing that blindsides you can result in the seizure of your accounts .
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Blannie, well said. My sentiments exactly. The thought of hiding funds while expecting government support is repugnant.
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Eeapling, i wonder what your understanding of Medicaid is, as opposed to Medicare? Medicare is a health insurance program open to all those over 65 who have paid into the system for a certain number of years. There is no means testing for Medicare.

MEDICAID is a means tested health insurance program for the impoverished.
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Questions like this make my blood boil! Why should we taxpayers pay for your care, so that you can leave an inheritance for your children? Pay for your care as long as you can with your own money, then let the state cover you until you pass. But don't try to hide money for your heirs. That's simply not fair to the rest of us.
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You may be wasting money meeting with an attorney. This is pretty staight forward, If you want taxpayer money for your care you need to spend yours on that first, else the taxpayers would be subsidizing the gift to your kids. The government can track cash, realestate and most large ticket assets.
You can give pictures, letters and small family heirlooms to your loved ones.
All granny left me was a cheap buddha statute with sentimental value, it was the last present my grandfather had given her before passing many years prior. If she has left me cash I would have spent it by now, but the Buddha statue has a place of respect in my home.
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jeannegibbs is right, you sit down with a professional, an attorney and a good financial advisor with experience in Elder Law and the Medicaid system in your particular state.
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Talk to a lawyer specializing in Elder Law about your particular circumstances. If you take $18,000 out of your bank accounts Medicaid is going to want to know what you did with it. "I'm saving it to be disbursed in my will" is not an acceptable response. The "look back" period is five years -- Medicaid can ask to see financial records that far back.

Once upon a time middle class people who saved diligently could expect to leave a modest inheritance for their children. Now that we are living longer and running into very expensive chronic medical conditions that is less and less common. I am sorry. Of course you would like to leave something for heirs, but that just isn't the way it works any more.

If you have some special situation, such as a handicapped child, a lawyer can help you sort out your options.
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What you are talking about doing is against the law. Medicaid is a program for the poor to pay for their medical care, not a way for you to preserve inheritance. You will spend down your assets to $2000 (varies by state) to be approved for medical care. The money you have saved is to be spent for your care...not for an your kids/grandkids unless you have enough to both pay for your care and give as an inheritance.

Angel
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