Should Social Security life expectancy be used to guide the Medicaid decision as to how much the community may retain in marital assets? - AgingCare.com

Should Social Security life expectancy be used to guide the Medicaid decision as to how much the community may retain in marital assets?

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Couple A's surviving spouse has a 3 year life expectancy but maybe lives 7 more years. Couple B may have a surviving spouse whose life expectancy is 12 years remaining but lives 8 more years. There are official life expectancies used by Social Security for it's planning. Maybe snf Medicaid needs to utilize these figures to make sense of what level assets a surviving spouse is forced to give up. If I have the maximum allowed for snf Medicaid of 120K for example, that's plenty if I only have 2 more years to live. How does this play out if I live 6 years or 14 years? Some other number of years? If you haven't done so already, you can look yourself up on Social Security. It will show what your life expectancy is. From there figure out how far the 120K will take you!

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We managed to get maximum CSRA, but had to slog through it, as several attorneys I called indicated they had not worked with the Medicaid eligibility side of this. I also spoke with 2 relators and neither had experience trying to move property with Medicaid lien. They both said they were willing to take on such a deal, but definitely would have to rely on additional legal assistance.
Since my spouse's assets had to be spent down to the point of keeping me at the CSRA limits, I'm trying to not dip into the assets I still have. I want to use those to help fund health insurance for me after snf spouse dies as I'll be in the age/resource gap that disqualifies me from any help, but not enough to take care of other things. I'm hoping to use a small remaining IRA to help with general living expenses during that time period. My original thought was to sale, take the equity and use it to supplement what I have, but that would have put both of us in financial ruins. If I draw Soc. Sec. early that will be so expensive, it may not actually help to draw early. The amount I could collect would negate being able to draw from spouse's account as he was the highest earner.
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Houseplant, its understandable why you are concerned about future finances. NH Medicaid doesn't require the community spouse to themselves become impoverished; only the spouse in a facility & on Medicaid needs to be. Now it's up to each state (not SSA) to determine just what the exempt asset limit is for the CS and what the CSRA / MMNA community spouse resource allowance / monthly maintenance needs assessment is. Its up to the CS to determine just out how to make those numbers best for their situation. To me, couples medicaid planning when it's 1 in a facility & the other a "community spouse" is complex & not a DIY project. You need a NAELA level of elder law atty.

What GeeWiz wrote is critically important..... you will also have income. With planning, your income should not be a factor in your spouses Medicaid eligibility. You aren't necessarily "forced to give up" assets to get your spouse onto Medicaid. Those non-exempt assets could be shifted into exempt assets (like pay off a mortgage) or converted into income paid to you. If your income is low but have a lot of expenses, you need to have your atty get as much CSRA as allowed in your state.
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Are your assets your only source of income? What about social security? Pensions? etc
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