Can a nursing home take my parents place? - AgingCare.com

Can a nursing home take my parents place?

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my parents place is worth $17000 and they both live in a nursing home so the wife and i live in their place and both of us are disable can the nursing home take it or can they give it to us or us buy it for$1.00 and love.

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This is from the NOLO website:

"When States Can't Recover Costs

"Even though the states must recover for costs paid when appropriate, there are certain prohibitions that states must follow. States cannot recover Medicaid-paid costs in the following situations.
...
Minor, blind, or disabled child. There is a surviving child under the age of 21, blind, or disabled, regardless of where that child lives."

There are other exemptions in addition. A state can also decide not to attempt recovery.

"A state can also waive estate recovery when it is determined that it would be too expensive to try to collect repayment from the estate. Each state is allowed to establish its own rules on what is not cost-effective."

In the case I know of, the value of the house was considered too low to go through the process of recovery. The daughter sold it and kept the proceeds.

I hope we haven't scared you into thinking you will lose the house you live in, Rex. I really doubt that will happen, given your circumstances. Do you have a disability case worker? Perhaps he or she could find out for sure, and put your mind at ease.
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Something that is not being mentioned or asked here....

It's not the nursing home that will "take" your parents' home. It's Medicaid Estate Recovery.

When it comes to Medicaid Estate Recovery, where they require sale of the home and the proceeds to be paid to the state to repay what Medicaid paid for your parents' care...that happens after they pass away. It's not going to happen before. Under Medicaid, you are allowed certain assets - a home and one car, and less than $2,000 per month income. Once you go into a nursing home situation, you will be required to pay a "patient pay" portion of the bill that Medicaid doesn't cover, which will be almost all of that $2,000 per month. They will leave you a very small amount for personal use each month (usually less than $100).

Now....you say:
"my parents place is worth $17000 and they both live in a nursing home so the wife and i live in their place and both of us are disable can the nursing home take it or can they give it to us or us buy it for$1.00"

It's not going to be the nursing home that takes it. And actually, no one is going to "take the home" - what will happen is Medicaid Estate Recovery will force you to sell the home and pay them the money from the sale, if your parents pass away while on Medicaid and there are no other circumstances involved.

You don't say whether you were caregivers for your parents for any period of time in the home, or if you were just living with them. If you were caregiving for them for a certain period of time, you may be able to keep the house under a deferrment - but again, that won't happen until your parents pass away.

If your parents are on Medicaid, "giving" you the home is going to be a problem. It will immediately disqualify them from Medicaid for as long as it takes to spend down the fair market value of the home, which will need to be paid to the nursing home as a private pay situation. Where is that money going to come from if they give you the home?

Also....selling you the home for $1 is going to result in the same problem. Medicaid will find out that the home was sold for less than fair market value, and the same thing will happen - they would be disqualified from receiving Medicaid until the fair market value of the home has been paid to the nursing home as private pay.

The long and short of it? You should speak to an attorney specializing in elder law and Medicaid law. I'm fairly certain you're going to find out that you can most likely live in the home while your parents are still living in the nursing home - but someone has to assume the maintenance and care of the home, plus paying any taxes / mortgage / insurance on the home as well, because if your parents are on Medicaid and in a nursing home, they will have no funds to do that. However - when they pass away, you will need to deal with Medicaid Estate Recovery. It would be best to address all of this with an attorney now, before that happens, to see what your options are.
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I would see an estate planning attorney and get a supplemental needs irrevocable trust fund set up. If you do that, I doubt Medicaid or anyone else can take the money. I am going through this now even though my mom is not yet in a nursing home. It may cost some money that you were not expecting to pay, but it will protect both you and your parents.
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If Medicaid is involved they will recover their costs by taking money from the proceeds of selling the house. BUT there are hardship exceptions, and also homes of "modest value" are exempt. I think states can define "modest value" differently, but the case I know of Medicaid did not recover from the house because it was valued at less than 50% of the average house price in the area.

rexbull28, I think you have nothing to worry about, since you are disabled and having to move would be a hardship, and also the value of the property sounds low (although I don't know what is typical in your area.)
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If the nursing home is being paid by Medicaid....then it is Medicaid that will require the home be sold ... at fair market value.

If you buy that home for just $1.00. You could find Medicaid coming to you to get the money...or the nursing home turning them out because Medicaid will not pay until the value of the home has first been paid to the nursing home.

So, for 5 years (the Medicaid look back period). You will be at risk of having to sell it to pay your parents nursing home.
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Are your parents using Medicaid to pay for their nursing home?  If not and they are paying the nursing home with their own money- do they have enough money to continue self-pay for the next five years or so?
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