I received a letter from Medicaid that I do not understand. Any advice?

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My husband has Alz.i applied for Medicaid to get in home help when I am at work.
I received a letter today that I do not understand . It states his request for benefits is pending until all assets over 2,000 is transferred from him to his wife. We have joint bank accounts are they saying I have to take all our money and put in my name only.

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Thanks igloo 572 you have been a great help. I am much younger than my husband by twenty years. We do not have much assets but have put what we have in my name only. I work and make a decent living but of course could not pay for nursing home. I only have four years left before I can retire. Plan on working until I am 70. Spoke to an elder care attorney and she said I am doing everything right so far. Durable power of attorney, a will health care surrogate And a Living will, all with my niece as the second in command.
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Shelia - another thought depending on what your (that is you alone) prospects are to continue to work and generate income, you may want to look into setting up you own financial plan for your later years. You need to speak with a trustworthy financial advisor who understands your goals. this site has a great FA (Robbins). What seems to happen is that if hubs is older and the wife is a much younger 2nd or 3rd wife, is that the 113K that is allowed under Medicaid CS rules just isn't enough for her 20 - 30 years left. If say you have 200 - 400K in possible assets, you don't want to have to spend-down to the 113K limit CS as you are going to need it. If this at all sounds like you, look into a SPIA. They can be done so that they are exempt from the asset tally but you need an FA who understands Medicaid rules for CS to make it work. If I did one, I would do 2 of them - equal value - but with 2 different carriers (just in case there is a problem with the company beyond state coverage) & designed to run out in my 90's so a delayed start of payout as we live forever in my family.
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No the car is totally good. Medicaid allows for couples or an individual to have one (1) car. If you still have a note on the car and if hubby goes into a NH, then your probably for sure want to file for MMNA.

Now if you are younger spouse and still working and have a pretty good income, the state's MMNA formula may show you do not need additional income but in general the CS always wants to file to try to get MMNA.
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Thank you for advice. I will transfer all joint funds in my name only. One more question we have one car on both our names still making payments. Is this considered an asset for him. Do I need to have that in my name only also?
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Since you are a married couple, Medicaid looks at both the applicant and their spouse's (you are called the "community spouse" in Medicaid speak) income & assets. The applicant - your hubby - cannot have his monthly income over whatever it is set in your state (each state sets this amount and it varies by state, like Texas was $ 2,064.00 max income each month when I applied for my mom and it is like $ 200 higher now) & his non-exempt assets cannot be over 2K. Your hubby's income is probably not an issue as that would have been mentioned in the letter but he has over 2K in assets which is the problem.

But you need to understand that for the CS (community spouse), the state does NOT expect you to become impoverished for hubby to receive care through Medicaid. In general, the CS is allowed $ 113,000.00 in nonexempt assets (can vary by state) but they have to be in your - the CS's - name. Understand? Now probably - my best guess - hubby has a life insurance policy with a cash value built up (lets say it has 20K cash value) and then hubby & you have a joint savings account with 30K in it. So hubs has 15K in assets from savings (50%/50%) & his 20K from the insurance policy in his name & his ownership, so hubs is 33 K over the allowed 2K in assets (20K + 15 + = 35K - 2K allowed). You need to get the insurance changed to your ownership & then open your own savings account so that the 30K in savings is totally yours. Understand?

As an aside, the whole community spouse situation can be totally sticky and you need to do whatever to ensure your own financial security as you could outlive hubs for many many years (my mom has so far outlived my dad by almost 30 years). What often happens for those who spouse goes into a NH on medicaid, is that the CS does NOT apply for MMNA - monthly maintenance needs allowance.
Under MMNA, if the CS needs hubby's income (SS or retirement) which is supposed to go to the NH as hubs Medicaid required co-pay, to really make ends meet then the CS can file to get MMNA. The MMNA is available but you have to apply for it otherwise all his monthly income is paid to the NH. You don't want that to be the case for you as you are the CS & you need that income to live on. The states have a whole formula on what the MMNA is supposed to be - like for my mom's state it is $ 2,200.00 max that can be diverted to MMNA which could mean the NH gets zero co-pay as all goes to the spouse for MMNA. But you have to apply for the MMNA!

If I were a CS, i would definitely go to see an elder law attorney as to how to best structure all this so that you are in the best long-term financial situation for yourself. You want to make sure that however your assets are set up are such that if something happens to you, that it doesn't jeopardize hubby's Medicaid. the biggest single mistake that couples do is make each other their beneficiary of each others life insurance policy but if 1 of them is on Medicaid you don't want that. If hubby is needing care now, it eventually will be the situation where he will need a higher level of care like in a NH, so you want to plan for that & in a way that enables you not to become impoverished yourself. Good luck.
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