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Nursing home takes all her income except $50. Not approved for Medicaid yet. Hospital says she can settle, autopay, or it's going to collection?

If she’s applied for Medicaid then they will back-pay up to 3 months of medical bills. If all her income is going to the nursing home then she’s judgement proof and her bills will have to go unpaid. You don’t have to worry about paying them—she doesn’t have the money and debt collectors can’t come after her.
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Reply to worriedinCali
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igloo572 Nov 27, 2020
Yes, this lil factoid is great to keep in mind.

However, if any of the providers her mom should see in that 3 month window does not participate in Medicaid, their bills won’t get paid by Medicaid. And for even more fun in all this, if her mom has / had a secondary insurance that paid any of her bills during her “Pending period”, once she becomes Medicaid eligible with retroactive payments possible, her old secondary insurance can do a clawback on all payments paid during “Pending”.

I had this with my mom. It was a semihot mess that ran basically for abt over a year to get over. Mom had super good FEHIB Blue Cross, basically zero copay & very low premium from her federal annuity. She went into NH #1 with Medicaid eligibility letter sent not quite 5 1/2 mos later. So for 5+ mos, that BCBS was still in force & $ taken from her annuity for its premium. I did send NH a letter as to FEHIB was being suspended in tandem with Medicaid filing. However NH #1 had some PTs as outside contractors; & they billed to & were paid by BCBS. NH also billed some in-house services to BCBS too. BCBS did clawback on everything paid once mom became Medicaid eligible. NH #1 rebilled to Medicaid but 2 freelance PTs were stuck as neither participated in Medicaid. Why a PT working at a NH with Medicaid beds would not be a Medicaid vendor is beyond me.... but that’s a whole other issue. Anyways PT1 noticed maybe 8 -9 mos in and billed my mom directly (same as he billed BC). By this time, mom had very little $ in assets left, the premium repay had been basically spent. I offered to pay over time from her assets, but he was like just NM and was already at another NH. Then Mom moved to much much better NH #2 abt mo 11. Abt yr later, another PT sends mom a bill for his old PT services at NH#1; again I offered to pay over time from Her $.....he threatened collections, called a bunch of times but did nothing. After the PT #1 issue, I called BCBS and basically was told PT could have appealed clawback and BC would likely have paid but it had to be done by the provider in a timely manner. My mom only could dispute a bill submitted by a vendor. Clawbacks & adjustments to payments and rebilling another insurance are really common. Doesn’t make it any mess confusing tho’.
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You don't pay. You tell the hospital she is in a nursing home on Medicaid pending and she has no money left. Tell the hospital to bill Medicaid.
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Reply to mstrbill
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You don't pay. Just tell them (in writing) that your mother is in a nursing home on medicaid. BUT, even if she wasn't you are not responsible (legally or morally) for your mother's debts including medical debts.
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Reply to MsRandall
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You personally don't pay these bills. If her credit numbers go down so what.
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Reply to JoAnn29
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Let bills go to collection.

If she’s applied for LTC NH Medicaid she’s had to become impoverished in order to be eligible. She has no $ except perhaps for $ 2k as a nonexempt asset and whatever she doesn’t spend from the whopping $50 a mo PNA (personal needs allowance). She basically has no $. She’s judgement proof. Let it all turn over to collections.

The only things I’d be concerned about is IF you somehow ever signed off on any of these accounts as financially responsible
OR
the debt collectors get you to agree to pay your moms debts. They are real bottom feeders and will be relentless in trying to nail you or really anyone to take on “ownership / responsibility” for her debts. If they have your address, or phone # expect to be harrrassed on this. Daily too. You’ve imho got to develop a thick skin to withstand this. Or you need to be able to go all proactive pittbullie bad witch with them & send them certified 30 day demand proof letters & if you’re clever wicked & bored you play with them on the phone...

Realize the OC aka the original creditor like the hospital or MD office have debts pretty much automatically going to a primary debt collection outfit after 6-9 months; that primary debt guy then sells for pennies to a secondary debt collector in another 3-6 mos; then them to yet another even lower bottom feeder. Like I wrote you gotta develop a thick skin on ignoring all this. It’s not your debt, ain’t nothing they can do to you but threaten.

Downsize will be if the OC writes off the debt and includes it in their business tax filing. IRS rules are if it’s over $600 loss that a 1099-c Cancellation of debt is done. Smaller biz might not do this. But bigger ones do 1099-c automatically on all debt written off. If mom gets one it will come to her for 2020 taxes filed by Jan. 31, 2021. So you kinda need to be on the lookout Jan-Feb for it at whatever address the OC would have for your mom. Personally I would NOT have moms address as the NH; what’s a good alternative is for you to open up a mail box at a UPS store or some other shipping store that rents mail boxes. You open it up as they need a driver’s license but it’s for you & mom and mom has this a her new address for everything. It’s nice as it does help keep all things mom separate from you & yours. You go once a week, twice a mo & pick mail up. Become pals with owner & they will call you if something interesting comes in too.

Why is this important? Well the $ amount in the 1099-C technically is income to mom. In a way it’s phantom income but income nevertheless. So 2 issues, there’s taxes owed to IRS on the “income” AND if Medicaid in your state does a match up with IRS, mom is going to appear to have way way more “income” than actuality so over Medicaid income limits. There’s tax filing you can as DPOA do to get thru both of these, so if she gets 1099-C come Jan or Feb do a new post, ok.

Also often debt collector threaten with they will too file a 1099-c. They cannot. Only OC / original creditor can do 1099 cancellation of debt.
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LakeErie Dec 1, 2020
“go all proactive pittbullie bad witch with them & send them certified 30 day demand proof letters & if you’re clever wicked & bored you play with them on the phone...”

what does this even mean? Some of the worst advice I’ve ever read on here. SMH with this one.
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Contact the hospital's senior services center. They may be able to help you. Most hospitals have a financial aid department that can and will remove remaining debt, senior services/assistance department can help streamline the process for you, especially since she is Medicaid pending in a care facility. Make it clear that you are not financially responsible for her bills and can not pay for them. Collections department goals are to clear the books and get what they can, threatening going to collection agency etc, not to give you information on what options for assistance that are available to your LO.
If they do send bill to collection agency get person's name, call back number, and company name and address, before discussing anything. After you have this information, tell them she does not live with you and you are not responsible for her bills, please stop all calls, that if it continues you will report them (there is a penalty if they continue to do so) sit down and write a letter to the company date, time, person who you spoke to also informing them of cease and desist, keep exact copy of letter for your files. Mail letter return reciept, preferably with a signature of reciept also for your files. If they continue to call and harass you, report them to local states attorney office. Good luck to you.
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whaleyf Dec 1, 2020
so true. good advice
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They can't take what she doesn't have. They may try to get it from you. If they do, just ignore them. I would suggest that you send the billing department a certified letter saying you aren't responsible for your mother's debt. Then they aren't allowed to contact you. Mom has no money so they can't touch her.
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Reply to whaleyf
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I would ignore them. Don't stress yourself over it. They are your mom's medical bills and she doesn't have the money to pay them. Unless you're hiding a big pile of your mom's cash, it is the hospital's problem.
Exploring possibilities for willing payers is the billing department's due diligence. Help them check the box and move on by sending them an email or letter clearly stating that you are not responsible for your mother's debts.
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Reply to IsntEasy
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You are not responsible for your Mother's debts. However, if she has any property in her name they can take that - a house, bank accounts, stocks, etc. . There is a 5 year look back on assets so they could recover that way if they can trace where money from a house sale went. (or they could deny medicaid based on it). If she has no assets then there is nothing they can do. Just ignore, or return any letters unopened and mark" moved" with nursing home as forwarding address or as suggested send certified letter stating your are not responsible and update her address to nursing home.
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AlvaDeer Dec 1, 2020
They cannot take a house, even a bank account. The most that a creditor can do is go to court for collections, get a lien on a home, get a judgement, and then try to collect on that judgement. It would never be worth their time in doing that for this amount. This will be written off, given to collectors who hope to collect pennies on the dollar by annoying phone calls, and in some amount of years completely disappear.
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In Ohio, Medicaid is retroactive. Her hospital bill may be covered by Medicaid. You should be able to speak to your mother’s social worker for assistance at the nursing home.
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