Will Medicaid 5yr look back come after us for using my parents money to help with bills?

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Mom has dementia and lives with us and dad does too. Mom and dad have lived with us for about 2 yrs they do help pay the bills. They have Doubled since they moved in. I'm not rich or they would pay nothing. The question is if dad does before mom and we have to put mom in a care unit are they going to come after us for the money that was to help with bills. My dad is fine nothing wrong with him he is in his 80s But mom is not late stages dementia I have to help her with every thing and so does dad I am going to marry my other half in iowa and it still is not legal in Nebraska for gay marriages.

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I echo the excellent advice of everyone who has chimed in. Please see an elder law attorney asap. As was mentioned, the law isn't necessarily fair, but it is the law. You need expert legal help to sort this out.
Take care,
Cetude....I find your statement that "If you don't visit your loved one like daily the staff will abuse, neglect or mistreat your loved one" to be extremely offensive & abhorrently inaccurate. I spent 7 of my 28 years in nursing working in nursing homes, either as staff or as per diem relief, and I NEVER saw any of the PURPOSEFUL abuse, neglect or mistreatment that you're insinuating. If a resident didn't get changed the instant they soiled themselves, it wasn't for a wanton desire to neglect or make them suffer, it was due to a workload issue. Everyone on this board expresses how difficult & draining it is to care for 1 or 2 loved ones at home. Try being responsible for 50 residents on a wing with just yourself and, depending on the shift, anywhere from 1 to 6 aides. People here, myself included, struggle with 1:1 or 2:1 care...try a 6:1 ratio (or greater), all while dealing with interruptions from physician rounds, sick calls, phone calls from family or family that wants to stand at the unit desk & verbally berate you for 20 min for something stupid like they found that another resident's socks had inadvertantly gotten put in their mom or dad's drawer. (Yes, that is a real event) I had a family chew me out, in front of everyone in the building, on a daily basis because we hadn't successfully gotten Mom to walk the halls on her own. We busted a$$ for 2 months using 2 assists trying to get this woman ambulating under her own steam to find out that Mom hadn't walked for the 2 previous years! The family's expectation was that, now that she was in a nursing home, we would be able to turn back the hands of time & make Mom the independent & self-sufficient woman she used to be! Just because they're family doesn't mean their goals are always realistic!

Yes, there are homes that do a better job than others....partly due to wage structure & partly due to staffing levels. It's a fact of life, places that pay better attract more experienced, more motivated staff. We like to see nurses as selfless individuals who care for everyone...and, by in large, we are...but the truth is, everyone needs to earn enough to survive, so wages do matter. Staffing levels pretty much go in the same category. Being a nurse...and especially being a CNA...is an incredibly physical job. Lifting & turning a full-grown adult who, often, can't help in any way or, worse yet, fights you the whole time, isn't easy...and we often have to do this on our own. Th is is one reason why there's not a nurse alive that doesn't have a bad back! Homes with low staffing levels will see high turn-over because no one wants to risk injurying the people they care for...or themselves. A severe injury can end a career & that nurse's earning capability so, yeah, she's gonna go where the staffing levels provide sufficient help.

The last year that I worked in a nursing home I worked 11-7 on an Alzheimer's unit & it was just me & ONE aide to deal with 36 wandering, confused & combative residents. That's an 18 resident to 1 caregiver ratio! So, yeah, I find your idiotic comment to be incredibly insulting.
The sad thing about nursing homes is that the stress does not end there. If you don't visit your loved one like daily the staff will abuse, neglect or mistreat your loved one. A single CNA has like a whole hall of very needy patients. Medical technology keeps people alive a lot longer, but the elderly are treated like garbage once they get old. If the nursing homes feeds and keep your loved one clean without bedsores they are doing a great job due to the huge amounts of patients they have. I hope I don't live that long.
Id be tempted to put a rental agreement in place and back date it - yes I know that's illegal. The only issue is that you would be expected to pay tax on that so its not a win win situation. the bonus is that you could then increase the rental as long as you aren't being ridiculous of course. After all why should they live with you free of charge - they had to pay for things in their previous domicile
CETUD - - - To avoid the neglect - well, not avoid, but to be aware - I have put a nanny cam in my mothers room. She has beginning of dementia, so for a while she is fine, then not so...no one knows it is there, not even her. It is a clock.
You really are best served by seeing an elder law attorney as you have 2 different issues to be concerned about: possible transfer penalty issues AND your dad being a "community spouse" when & if your mom goes into a NH and needs to apply for Medicaid to pay. These are kinda two very different issues but both affect your mom's eligibility for Medicaid and what dad does (or does not need to do) as far as keeping his assets to whatever your state has for CS.

CS can get somewhat complex as their financials has a fixed date (aka "Snapshot" date) that everything is set from, in a way it is less flexible for couples to do after application Medicaid planning even though there is a community spouse situation. Really you need good legal & I'd suggest you get one who is NAELA certified.
They can assess penalties if you don't have a caregiver contract prior to getting the money. Of course those would be really nice if you knew about them ahead of time and not only find out about it at the time of medicaid application. I didn't know. Was solely responsible for my dad for 3 years - no way I could do that full time and work; or not go bankrupt or lose my home. We have been fighting with the State of Illinois (one of the most broke in the country) for 2 years now. So far the nursing home hasn't kicked him out. We can meet half of the monthly $4,700. There is such a thing here as an undue hardship waiver when they assess penalties - but so far - that's been denied also. The criteria for it are without the care he's receiving he would be at risk of health, life, shelter, food, clothing. It's apparently not enough that my dad can't do any of his own activities of daily living, can no longer put together intelligible sentences and most days a spoon is complicated for him. I coudln't take that back on by myself and my house is not set up for it. Ask them if they care.
I'd say you're in a much better position if mom and dad wrote checks directly . . . For your mortgage...utilities...food. The problem you have is that Medicaid may consider everything they paid directly to YOU as a gift.

It's not fair necessarily, but it'd the way it is. Too bad you didn't take Igloo's excellent advice months ago. An Elder Law attorney. And the only thing worse than your not having DONE that is to let ONE MORE DAY GO BY without an appointment. Don't think you can afford it? Well...that advise your parents CAN pay for. Call asap.
cetude I sort of know where youare coming from BUT in the UK we have a audit system that cetifies and rates care homes and nursing homes and I always would advise check on their status and visit them. If when you walk in the door you can smell urine or worse walk away immediately. If you are met immediately by someone and they are happy to sow you round even thought you didnt make an appointment then I think you may be on to a winner.

Don't fall for the appointment trick - its easy to clean up once in a while it is keeping it fantastic ALL the time that counts. if you ring and they want 3 days notice then alarm bells are already ringing. If you say I want to come round in 30 minutes and they say can you make that an hour because we need to focus on teas/drug rounds then even better.
If bad comes to worse, and you are desperate - you can get your loved one hospitalized; after 3 days in the hospital, Medicare will pay up to 100 days nursing home care for rehab. Meanwhile you can try to get your parent on Medicaid which you may need an Eldercare attorney. However, if your parent is showing decline (and many do decline after they are in the nursing home, especially if you don't visit them often they REALLY get bad off because the staff will either neglect or abuse them), you can get your loved one on hospice, which Medicare will pay for. However, even Medicare is losing money so they had many cuts. It's awful no matter what you do.

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