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Um, if you apply for Medicaid, they look back five years from the date of application. If mom runs out of money in a few months to private pay, she will have to apply for Medicaid, the gift will show up, and medicaid will not pay until AFTER the penalty period is over. Check with a lawyer. You don’t get to sit on the money for 3 years while Medicaid pays...
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Your should consult an elder care attorney in you state, one who is certified and who understands Medicaid regs--not one who talks about "hiding money".

Have you care for mom in her home for the past two years?

Really, you need GOOD legal advice, it will be money well spent.
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I have heard of the penalty period. Just wanted to make sure it was legitimate. I want to make sure my mom is taken care of...first and foremost, but my family could sure use some of the money now rather than having to wait for 3 more years. any advice from anyone?
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You don't have to "give it back." But it will create a penalty period during which she will not be eligible for Medicaid. Someone will have to pay the nursing home during that period. Do you still have the money? Could you use it for this purpose?
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Yes, Medicaid look-back provisions were put in place to prevent people from giving away money and then claiming to be destitute.
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Mom and Dad gave it as a gift. Dad passed away and Mom is in a nursing home. She will run out of money in her account in a few months. Will need Medicade to cover part of the bill after that.
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Were you left money in a will or were you gifted money by a person who is now in need of Medicaid?
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