If Mom changes from Medicare to Medicaid, will she lose Social Security?

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My Mother is confused. She has no assets. The option of picking on Dr.? What are advantages .

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She doesn't actually lose SS but Medicaid will use it for her care, so amounts to the same thing. In most states, people are allowed to keep a small amount monthly for haircuts, clothing, etc. but that's about all.

Medicaid is there for the poor. Frustrating as it is to lose all parents' assets (as was the case in my family) to care, we also understood that their money was intended for their care. Just about two months after all of my parents' assets were spent down, my mother died. My dad had died a few months earlier. It was difficult for my mother to not be able to leave anything to the family, but I kept explaining that the money was there for her care. Medicaid took over for those last couple of months and we were grateful to have it.

This is a difficult process for those of us who have parents without a lot of assets, but it's real life for many. Experts in the finance field seem to have methods that can work for some to protect assets, but the reality for most of us is that there's not enough money to make this work. There's also the moral ground - as I said, Medicaid is for the poor.
Take care,
Carol
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Unfortunately as a society we have determined to impoverish the elderly for them to receive care (NH care normally). So if the senior has their wits about them they are aware they will spend their last days in a nursing home with Medicaid paying the bill and all of their earned and saved income taken or "spent down". Working all your life and ending up in such a situation isn't what most Americans expected in their "Golden Years".

We need to provide needed care, with a sliding scale and not try to impoverish people who entered old age with income. Again most would prefer to stay in their home with care but the legislation for long term care in the home does not exist so --into the nursing home system they go. Never mind that it costs the taxpayers more than keeping the elder in their home with help.

We need a big rethink on how to fund long term care. Perhaps the pressure of 79 million aging baby boomers in 10-20 yrs will force change. Clearly there are not enough Medicaid paid beds for 79 million elderly.
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In NYS you have Medicare as your primary insursnce and Medicaid is your secondary. Medicare only pays for the first 20 days in the nursing home, with Medicaid picking up the sizeable remainder. If mom is already in the nursing home they have a medicaid specialist on staff. They should help walk you through the process sinve you both are looking for the same thing , to get the nursing home paid. If mom doesn't have a lot of assers it's pretty straight forward, but s great deal of paperwork. On the other hsnd if there are assets involved please see an Elder Care Attorney. There is a site online called AVVO. You can ask specific legal questions and lawyers in your area will give you short answers. It also gives reviews on lawyers who practice in your area. I found it extremely helpful. Before I found the site I set up a consultation which I was charged $250 for the hour and she made me feel rushed and worse when I left than when I got there.I hired a lawyer that had wonderful recommendations, no charge for the consultation. Young and eager. If he didn't know something he said so and went and foundd out the answer.Always answered my calls promptly. Something to be said about the more mature attorneys who act as if they are doing you a favor. The one thing I hope you get from my scenerio is to get legal advice. Medicaid has a 5 year look back window. This means they look at evsrything and I mean everything that mom has done with her assets in that time frame and demand explanations. Good luck!
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You don't lose Medicare if you are of Medicare age, if you go on Medicaid. Medicare is usually primary and Medicaid secondary. In Indiana (don't know if it's the same in all states, but assume so) - Medicare will pay first for doctor's appointments, hospital, labs, etc. Also, if someone gets home health visits after a hospital or nursing home stay, whatever benefits Medicare will pay for has to be used before going to Medicaid. But, the only time they (Medicare) pay anything for care in a nursing home is for 1-3 months after being in the hospital. If they need to be permanently in a nursing home, that goes under Medicaid. Like they have said above, Soc. Sec. is her income for life so they can't take it away, but when they go into a nursing home, she has to give it all to them (minus that small amount for personal items) to help pay for the care there and Medicaid pays for whatever's left. Medicaid is usually regulated by each state, so that state's rules apply, but Medicare is a national program and usually the same everywhere (regular Medicare that is - some are using the HMO Medicare under an insurance company - in that case, the basic Medicare rules apply, but the insurance co. may have additional rules it works under).
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As far as I know they will take all the income that she gets to pay for long term nursing care. My mother is in the process of switching to Medicaid and she has to give her monthly income to the nursing faciility and is allowed to keep 72.00 a month for personal needs. She is only allowed to have 2000.00 in her checking account at all times . We had to spend down her money which included per paid funeral, 1500.00 burial account and turn over her life insurance policy's to the funeral home. It is a long process and very detailed. I had alot of help with the application through a agency that specializes in helping clients with the application . Good luck!!!
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She's in Ohio, and the articles here aging-care.com,are very different than what you went through. Gees ole petey. Pretty Typical, isn't it. I guess this is why we're suppose to to deal with these issues in our 60's. So the stress of all these decisions don't fall on our children's shoulders, while we drift in and out of LaLa Land!
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Consider speaking with an accountant or attorney about the use of trusts to harbor some of her assets. The example above turning life insurance policy over to funeral home is not a fit solution for everyone and I would question this or any guidance that recommends a solution allowing a vendor to benefit from the savings/investments/estate assets rather than a trust keeping the assets within the executor's reach that would mitigate the estate settlements post-departure.
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We seem to be assuming that mom is going into a nursing home and the answers are relevant to that. But, if mom isn't going into a nursing home that makes a difference. Please let us know what the situation is. You don't really change from one to the other. Medicare is primary and you don't give it up if you also qualify for Medicaid. Medicaid is basically medical welfare and kicks in after Medicare. Medicaid has many aspects and in some cases can pick up paying the Medicare premium.
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Much has been said and you will surely utilize many of these suggestions. My experiences led me to the Aging and disability resource center (very helpful). No attorney was needed. Dad still living and receiving Moms Soc.Sec. Spend down included a burial trust up to 12,000.00,(burial included both parents each at that rate), Bought plot and stone, bought Mom all new clothes, put $2000. in bank for her, but have to keep it at that level at all times. Note (money cannot be given away within less than 5 years or they will make you wait to receive Medicaid/even after the spend down). Property as in land/rentals etc… (not your home or personal possessions/but the value of such must be disclosed) have to go on the market/for sale(also note here, that I believe she can title land or property with another family member, therefore Medicaid will only take a % of its value/this you would need a lawyer for). If it sells Medicaid gets the $$. You must show receipts for all expenses. Secret- take some extra cash and put it back for her in the event she needs something more, or lives to 90+ years and needs a new wardrobe, find a way to show expense, or do it before you apply and contribute it to living costs. If she can drive, buy a new car, furniture for home or nursing home use. She can pay you a wage within reason, for POA or services as well. Give receipts. We 4 siblings, moved my parent here from Arkansas in 2010. Dad paid us each $1000.00, Medicaid found this reasonable. My Dad loaned my brother 3000.00 prior to the spend down. Dad had to pay out of pocket for nursing home until that $3000. was spent down. If there is no surviving spouse to receive Soc.Sec. Medicaid will take all but an allowance as mentioned earlier by princess7. So let say your Mom has $100,000. She has to be at poverty level to receive complete Medicaid. She will probably have to spend down to $20,000. or less, with minimal insurance. If she has life insurance, it will be considered cash. As vegaslady says take notes and document everything. Lots of paper work coming up. I put together a binder with multiple folders to track of it all. Best to you & yours.
Suegirl- Aging and Disability resources will have contact info for both states.
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We had to apply for Medicaid for our mom, because we felt (a) there's a history of longevity in her family & who are we to think that Mom won't live at least 5-8 more years, if not more; (b) dad, 94 and mom's husband, has terrible dementia but can still ambulate and we take care of him in his own home, and hope to do so for as long as he lives.

But I understand the distress when one sees all of your parents' assets slowly drained away. This is happening right now to mom & dad. Dad has been able to hold on to what was left for his care, but once he is gone...ALL of it is gone.

Our worst fears now are that dad will continue to live past his assets and we will have to apply for Medicaid for him too.

It is horrid to have dementia in America!
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