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Mother (85) with Alzheimer's has a couple 401K accounts and we need the cash to pay for her private pay care in her home. Her husband of 15 yrs has over 500K in bank but will not help with her care. We have used all of her savings. She gets 1200 month SSI but private care if 1250 per week. Since he has money and they live together we don't think she would qualify for Medicaid. If we put her in an assisted living location would he be forced to support his wife? We are located in WV.
If we close out her 401K accounts does she have to pay the 20% tax as well as early disbursement fees at her age? Even with her money from these accounts she will be out of money within a year keeping the same help we have. She needs 24 hr care. They both receive the 24hr care in her home but he will only pay for the day shift, my mother pays for the other 2 shifts. We have talked to all of the agencies and they all agree this is horrible behavior by her husband but no one can do anything. He is 88 and still has his mind and from what all agencies tell us they cannot force him to take care of his wife, my mother. We have been to 4 elder care lawyers, Family Services, Adult Protective Services, her investment companies. We need help and suggestions. I am now spending my own savings to pay for her care, I am not able to work for overseeing her daily care, paying her bills, keeping up her house etc. Her husband has never paid a utility bill, paid for groceries or anything since they were married. She gave him lifetime rights and has supported him these 15 years. With her Alzheimer's the last 5 years she is unaware of any of these issues, we think she would be better off in an assisted living environment but now we don't know how to pay for that and upset that this man can live in the home my mother and father built. My mother deserves better than this and we expect more from her husband. Where do we start now?

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Oh boy, my sympathies! As mentioned above , it sounds like you need clarification of the 401K drawdown . After a certain age you are required to take the drawdown without penalty but it still has tax implications. Your financial helper can authorize taxes to be withheld if you so choose. Each state may have different laws about the financial responsibility of a spouse, even if the spouse says they refuse to pay bills. My Dad lives in Pennsylvania and his wife has stated the same response regarding my Dad's potential financial needs. She did so through a letter from her attorney but Dad's attorney says it might not be that easy for her to dodge if it is challenged. So now I would ask you the following: does Mom have a financial POA? Who is it? Whose name is on the title of the house? Both? Can she borrow against that equity to help pay bills? Also, there is a little known IRS deduction regarding paying the housing benefits of someone with cognitive impairment and being able to use that expense as a deduction on the Schedule A. If the individual is still paying federal taxes by using this document you can reduce the overall annual federal tax liability of your Mom....but again, only if she pays Federal Taxes to begin with.It is not as if you get the cash back but it does reduce one's federal tax responsibility. I am a bit surprised that you cannot find some better answers for all the people you mentioned, especially the elder attorney or the investment people. Are the resources in your town in WV knowledgable enough or do you need to reach outside your town for more current help?
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I may be misunderstanding what you're asking, but i thought early disbursement fees are for those m aking withdrawals before age 59 1/2. After 70 1/2 she is required to make withdrawals.
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