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Igloo, thanks for the explanation. I'm glad someone is using laws to protect him/themselves in these kinds of situations. It's an interesting method; I'm going to think about it and keep it in mind in case I ever reach that stage.

I haven't seen the news about the LA and Medicaid cutbacks. I'm unfortunately not in a mood to read about those kinds of mass cuts and not become upset - maybe later, on down the line, when life is a bit more calm and farther past Dad's death. There's just too much negativity and it's frustrating b/c there's nothing I can do, other than get politically active again, and I don't have time or the patience for that. Plus, the fiascos emanating from DC are disturbing enough.
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Yes mechanics = workman’s. And yes his reasons seemed to be based on both. The situation was he was aware of & irritated by what his wife’s family went through in dealing with working ranch exemption drama. For him, his mom’s house needed work to even get sold and he wasnt going to caught out paying without getting reimbursed but his mom was already in a NH so that apparently limited what he could do. But he could as dpoa contract for repairs done with house placed to securized debt as per repairs contract. He knew the management co in some way prior. She died within a few months at NH and company was paid as a debt of the estate. Medicaid did not file a claim. House got sold with proceeds paid to heirs as per her will.

What I’ve found is your states property and probate laws are super mucho importante when it comes to elderly property ownership and Medicaid. So your attorney needs to be current and proactive. To me - in my not an attorney experience - if your state allows for Medicaid to place a lien on the property from day 1 of medicaid, family / heirs are at a total disadvantage. But if your in a state -like TX- which does not allow for unsecured debt - like credit cards, Medicaid- to be placed on ones homestead, it’s a better situation as it then has to become a properly filed claim against the estate in order to be paid if you open probate. And if yours is a Level of Claim by Class probate system with MERP as a lower class (like for TX, MERP is a class 7 claim so class 1 - 6 paid before), there may not be assets enough for a lower value property to pay beyond Class 3 or 4. Also you can possibly have other exclusions or exemptions to limit Recovery.

Some states (MS) are now excluding property under a certain assessor limit from Recovery. If it’s going to take the same # of man hours & cost and legal filings to go after a house worth 50k as one close to the Medicaid limit of 500k, it makes sense to place a value threshold on property and just focus on property over 100k, 150k, 200k.

On another tangent, did you see where LA Dept of Health today sent out almost 40 thousand letters to on Medicaid AL and NH residents that made recipients aware that unless our budget is changed ASAP that LA Medicaid will stop paying the states required share of Medicaid $ for LTC programs as of July 1st. It’s to me a pretty savvy move by administration to force the legislature to deal with the financial mess they put us in from the Jindal corporate give away years & poor decisions since then. This forces them to face moving $ back to social programs OR will sadly establish that states do not have to take care of its citizens. Bad press either way. Posts are everywhere..... HuffPo, NyTimes, WaPo. There’s & theAdvocate for LA newspapers. 
    Google: Louisiana Medicaid Cuts 2018. 
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Igloo, was the tactic of placing liens (used to be called mechanic's liens here in Michigan) not for the prime purpose of getting paid (as they would be here) but for documenting the legitimate work, and documenting to demonstrate that it wasn't done by family?

That's an interesting method of handling the situation. I haven't had any experience in that area, but in Michigan these kinds of liens are for unpaid bills, typically placed when contactors don't get paid.

As I recall, there was about a 3 month period of time during which a lien for unpaid debt could be filed.

Texas has some interesting laws.
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GuestShoppe has it right, they need to have a job estimate / contract or by the project invoice to dad as a legit business at standard market rates for fees and documented expenses just as if he was another client. Otherwise Medicaid will look upon the $ as gifting. Medicaid tends to take the viewpoint that whatever family does is done for free & out of a sense familial responsibility.

Can you dispute the “gifting”?? 
Maybe but imo the issue will be that taking a transfer penalty into appeals phase will mean that mom, you & the NH that mom is in will all get the gifting / transfer penalty notice from Medicaid. The NH will not be very enamored to have a resident ineligible for Medicaid/ under Medicaid appeals process. Either you or another family member will have to sign off on a financial responsibility agreement / contract with the NH or mom will get a 30 Day Notice to move from the NH. She’s in the system showing transfer Penalty issues so she’s toast on any othe place. At 5k - 15k a month for a NH, fighting an appeal for a few thousand probably isn’t worth it. 

What a very clever poster on this site did get around this was that he hired - as DPOA - a property management co to take care of the property. The house had real issues to ever get any buyer. He did not pay the bills but instead paid a retainer. The co placed Workman liens on the property every month for the full balance due. Workman’s liens -at least for TX - are very straightforward to do but you have to be a registered legit co with business license. Anyways when house sold, property management got paid as they had a secured lien on property. Sonny got his retainer back. Someone else has had their BIL who was contractor do a similar lien placement. Again, all work was secured by lien placed on the house allowed by property owner or their DPOA. It’s legit, & Medicaid can’t really do anything to get paid ahead of someone or a business with a secured debt or lien as Medicaid is an unsecured creditor. 

Doing anything after the fact is not legit. 
You might want to speak with an elder law atty as to perhaps your parent could do a promissory note or memo of understanding if correctly worded and witnessed and notarized for future work if they haven’t yet applied for Medicaid. 
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Cabridie, don't go overboard with repairs/improvements.

I sold my Dad's house "as is" as it was step back in time to the 1980's as nothing inside had been remodeled, well nothing was broken so there as no need. I just didn't have the energy to contract out tradesmen to do all of the updating working. My Dad was thrilled with the contract price, and the Buyer felt like he hit the jackpot, thus a win-win for everyone :) I did have the house appraised by a licensed Appraiser to give me an idea of pricing before I went to a Realtor.

There are plenty of DIY buyers out there who are happy to get a house that is selling a bit under market value. Plus if the Buyer wants to do a Home Inspection, it would be for "information only", thus no repairs will be made.

As for paying for labor, I agree with Guestshop above.
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Is this their usual job? Are they reporting it as income and paying taxes? Is the parent able to execute an agreement to repay them as competent? If the answer is “no”to any of the questions, it will probably be viewed as gifting by Medicaid. Medicaid tends to view family members as doing that type of work as caring for elders as family. Consult an attorney or hire outside folks if the repairs and labor are extensive.
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