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I am named as my mother's DPOA. We have a joint account with her name and my name and no other designation. Does having a joint account mean that Medicaid will look at my assets etc when determining eligibility? I keep a record of the statements and match the receipts, bills, etc and attach to the statement each month to show that payments out of the account have been for my mother's care. Should I set up the account as a Trust? There is not a lot there and we do want easy access to the funds to cover any emergencies or unexpected expenses

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Dunwoody has this spot-on.

The problem will be IF funds are CO-MINGLED. You are not doing that as all the $ is mom's and used for mom. Whether mom signs the checks or you do, doesn't matter. I would suggest that you get yourself on the account as the POD - pay on death. So you can use whatever is there to pay for funeral & burial stuff and because it's POD, the funds do NOT go into the estate or need to do probate.

For Medicaid, anything that is tied to your mom's SS # (or late hubby's SS # if the retirement is from him) or your mom's name will be viewed as mom's assets &/or income by Medicaid.
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Let's be clear on this. Having a joint account with a parent is not a problem. It is only a problem if your own money is in that account with your parent's money. If it is all the parent's money, and you can show that all deposits and withdrawals were only to benefit the parent, there is no problem. Keep your money in your own account and only engage in personal transactions from your own account. This is not rocket science.
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Yes if your money and her money are in the same account, Medicaid will get pretty ugly about it. Any lawyer will tell you to keep hers in a separate account.
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The monies in the joint account are only my mother's. They include her social security, a small annuity, and a very small inheritance she received. I set this up as a joint account after an experience with my FIL. My husband was named POA but was not named on the account and had terrible problems getting access to the account after his father passed away. So we will certainly continue to keep our finances and my mother's separate and carefully document the withdrawals. Thank you all for your help.
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I agree with Dunwoody.
I have a joint account with my mother but I only use that for my mother's expenses and only have her retirement money deposited in there.
I keep my finances separate from hers.

I suggest you separate the money if you can prove how much in the account is yours and how much is hers. Later on they might question how much you removed to your account but as long as you have documentation as to how much you personally deposited and which bills you paid for yourself and which bills you paid for your mother then you should be okay. I just complicates things.
Being a caregiver is stressful enough. Separate the accounts now and later on you won't have to worry about dividing up all those receipts and prove deposits.
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I, too, am on my mother's accounts as joint owner, but I have been very careful that only her funds are in those accounts and I only pay expenses that cover her or her house. I have power of attorney, but when she dies that power goes away, and having my name on her accounts will make it easier to resolve all finances. Just be careful that you don't put your own money in your parent's account or pay your own bills from that account.
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chrdearmas, having an account that has both your and her money in it does complicate things when it comes to Medicaid. Anything that is in the account will be considered as her assets when she applies. It is always advisable to keep monies separate. It is okay to have your name on her account if that is how you want to set things up (though that may present problems if you go in debt or get sued), but your personal money needs to be kept separate from hers. The best way to set it up, since you have POA, is to have two separate accounts with only one name on each account. This will work if your mother's bank honors a POA.
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