Medicare question, please advise. - AgingCare.com

Medicare question, please advise.

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I'm 68 yo., my live in girlfriend and 8 yo child ( not mine ) have been living with me for over 8 years. We live in Ohio. The only income we get is my monthly SS Check and about ten thousand a year from side jobs. We all receive a modest $98 a month in food assistance. Our medical is covered by the government. We have no personal medical policies.
My girlfriend will be receiving about 80,000 from a family will. I was planning on putting that money in bank accounts with my name and her name with the word ' or ' between our names.
My question is, if we do that will we still receive food assistance and more importantly government medical coverage? Thank you

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Yes she should report the money since she is receiving assistance. If she does not there could be (and probably would be) penalties for not reporting, the least of which would be a ban/sanction from receiving benefits in the future. When you signed up for SNAP you agreed to report any change in income.
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Reply to shad250
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Yes I think Sendhelp is correct. My nephew gets paperwork every year concerning food stamps. The form says that everyone in the household has to be able to receive food stamps. Is your GF able to work? Is she on SSD? If so, she maybe able to set up a Special Needs Trust. Then she can still get help.
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Reply to JoAnn29
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In a household receiving assistance (food stamps), her income would affect your ability to receive assistance too.
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Reply to Sendhelp
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Jet - first of all it’s her 80k not yours. & its going to be important to keep that distinction. Your not married & I'm guessing not in a legal partnership. I’m not saying this in a negative way but more that the 80 large affects her & her dependent child. At 68, you’ve got MediCARE. You have no worry about having health insurance. Your girlfriend, She’s 59/60 with a kid in elementary school so her health insurance needs more complicated.... she needs Medicaid or ACA and CHIP for her child. She is not on MediCARE like you are. 

Does she know the executor? She may want to ask for a delay on the “distribution”.  $ & property doled in probate has paperwork. The 80k in her name & address should be / will be reported on the “distribution list” filed in probate court. Usually the executor (or the atty) contacts those to be heirs as per the wills terms; then once the assets/debts are settled a distribution can happen (could be a partial distribution if it’s a big estate); usually executor sends out a W-9 along with some sort of Memo of Understanding in advance of payment. Then once executor gets back the W-9, etc. the checks go out. It will be reported as estate funds paid at the courthouse via probate court.

As it’s reported income paid, it will eventually surface. Just how kinda depends on your state as probate is governed by state laws. If there’s state income tax, then distribution gets reported to state tax authority as it’s income paid with taxes due for 2018 filing. AND that info easily dovetails to any state agency with “at need” financial eligibility for state programs.

SNAP, medicaid, ACA & CHIP all are state run programs (although joint federal & state funding), so her receipt of 80k would take her & her child over eligibility. When those programs are applied to, somewhere in the application will be a requirement that  the applicant must inform the state on any change of income / asset status within a period of time of receipt. Maybe 30 days. She HAS TO REPORT it as otherwise there will be fines as well as suspension from any “at need” program. If your state does clawback of benefits paid, this could be a huge clusterF. Why? cause any medical paid will be clawedback from doctors, clinic, RXs paid and they will seek payment at private pay rates from you all and turn over to collections. If you brought the daughter in to see the doctor, or picked up her RX or did anything to inply a family unit, then collections will seek you out as well. Doctors & clinics can refuse them as a patient, prescription now at full cost, what then? Daughter is 8 yrs old for Christ sake, she needs to be able to have health insurance. A hospitalization could be over 80k. Stuff like this snowballs.

80k is not enough $ to let something like this happen.
She must report the $. If it means no more SnAP or Chip etc, that’s what happens. 

And this is why I asked if she knows the executor. Executors have a bit of discretion as to when a distribution is done. Until it’s done, no income paid, no income received. No harm, no foul. I’d suggest she ask for a slight delay of her 80k, maybe 60 days. Then within this 60 days, she meets with an estate atty that is familiar with Medicaid and disability law to determine if anything can be done with 80k that is outside of affecting her & her daughters current “at need” status. If she or her daughter has any medical issues, maybe a SNT for them. It is ultimately her $, her inheritance, not yours.

For IRS, distribution goes onto IRS form 706. I have no idea how IRS does a match up. Usually heirs report the distribution as 1040 line 21 income.
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Reply to igloo572
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I would immediately seek legal advice from an expert like an attorney to explore your options before accepting the money, since, as GardenArtist states above, it could disqualify you from benefits and have tax consequences. Are you asking about Medicare or Medicaid being a concern?  
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Reply to Sunnygirl1
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My understanding of assistance is that it's income based. I'm not eligible because my nominal SS was about $20 over the monthly limit.

I would think that the $80K inheritance would in fact disqualify your GF from receiving assistance, and you, if you open a joint account. With that level of funding, you could afford to purchase your own food as well as medical insurance.

You might also want to think about the best way to manage the funds so that you now can provide for yourselves. Perhaps there are financial advisors for people receiving assistance to help guide you through this change.
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