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None of us know all the details of your finances, so our suggestions are just that..suggestions, not legal advice.

It is for your own benefit that you need to be VERY clear about what your state allows you to have when applying to Medicaid. Thus, if you choose to approach Medicaid first, just ask general questions without revealing any personal financial details.

Once you reveal your details, it may be too late to benefit from the Elder Lawyer's expertise.

All the best!
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Just want to add...You can keep a home but none of the applicants money is allowed to be for upkeep on the house only for their care. If a family member chooses to pay the upkeep, then Medicaid makes no guarantee that they will get it back. If you sell the house, those proceeds go towards the care of the person and Medicaid stops until it's spent down again. At that time, Medicaid can be filed for. If the house does not sell till after the person passes, then Medicare puts a lean on the house to recoup their money. In NJ the spend down is to 2000k. My Mom received 1500 in SS so received $50 a month in a Personal Needs Acct (PNA) held by the nursing facility. This $50 adds to the 2000k allowed. If person needing Medicaid has no assets other than SS and a small pension, I don't see the need for a lawyer. I had one because Mom had a house and a disabled person living with her. I also paid privately before Medicaid came in.

I would make an appointment with Medicaid first. Make sure you have all assets ready. If after talking to them you feel a lawyer would be in your best interest then hire one. Medicaid will allow the use of parents money for this. If parents monthly income is above the allowed amount for Medicaid, a Miller Trust could be set up. This will need to be done by a lawyer.
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Hi Beachsun, I am in Florida and each state has its own Medicaid money rules. The best thing to do is to contact an Elder Lawyer in the state in question. It's worth the hour's rate for a consult like this.

For example:
1. In Florida the patient can keep a non-interest savings for extra funeral expenses, on top of already having prepaid all funeral expenses. In Florida is $2,500. This has to have a beneficiary, of course, so that person can pay the extra funeral expenses for you when the time comes.

2. You can keep your home - whether you live in it or not, as long as you do not have any income from it (sale or rent) should you move into a nursing or ALF in the future. This is an important point to ask the lawyer on how to protect that property.

3. You will be able to hold a minimum amount of funds from your monthly Social Security checks. In Florida it is $ that grows, it is your money and you can do whatever you want with it. However, in Florida, you have to make sure your bank account does not show more than a $2,000 balance each month or you run the risk of not having Medicaid cover your medical expenses for that month or more.

Please understand that the Elder Lawyer has many ways to protect any savings you already have accumulated and may guide you to hold on to it in legal ways.
Consulting with him/her is a MUST before you apply for Medicaid!
Don't wait to do this.
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