We applied for Medicade just before she was hospitalized for 3 days. So I take it the money she gave as a gift last year has to be paid back before she can go to the nursing home with medicade assistance? will they take payments? I am going to cry.

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Auntie - what you are dealing with is a "transfer penalty". How it gets dealt with is very much dependent on how your state manages Medicaid, what the individual NH policy is and the period of time she will be "ineligible".

I would suggest that you speak to the NH to see if she is currently having her stay paid for by Medicare. First speak with the social worker and then the billing office, Usually if they are in the hospital for 3 or more days and then discharged for rehabilitation to a NH, the first 20 - 27 days are paid by Medicare. It is usually during that period of time, that you apply for Medicaid and they are accepted "Medicaid pending". The good part about if Medicare is paying it does give you a bit of breathing room to your panic.

You need to ask what the transfer penalty is for your state. For example in Texas it's about $ 148.00 a day - which is the state's NH reinbursement rate. Texas is low and so 10K is a l....o...n...g. time. But if your state, pays $ 350 a day, it's alot less time. Also ask the NH what needs to be done in order for her to stay there. It may be that you will have to sign off a contract for the 10K or a deposit of $ 5K.

If the 10K was used for her care or her needs and you can document that, then those amounts can be deducted. Or if the 10K was reinbursement for expenses you paid on her behalf, those amounts can be deducted. I'd get an attorney to work this out for you. Good luck and yes it can seem overwhelming.
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Sorry to read about your misfortune.

I don't have the answer, but I am very curious about how this situation plays out in the real world.

In my case, about 10 years ago my grandmother had socked away a fair amount of money that she had been able to save by living with my mother and me for the previous 10 years. (I lived on the property but in a quasi-guest house in back) About half of her money was in CD's designated for her adult grandchildren.

Well, when my mother passed away at that time, my grandmother somehow felt that her own end might be near, and foolishly gave my sister and my cousins (but not me - the actual caregiver!) their "inheritance". Over $40,000. I was too consumed by the shock of my mother's passing to think clearly, but obviously in hindsight I should have advised her to absolutely NOT do that.

Anyway, my grandmother made a "deal" with me to leave me whatever she had left in exchange for me promising to take care of her "til the end". What I didn't understand at the time was that she would use the threat of ripping me off completely to control my entire life to the point that even going out for a hair cut once every 4 months or so resulted in a crisis where I was told to move out.

Despite her horrible behaviour, I kept my promise to her, and - very probably related to me being a health theorist extraordinaire - she lasted to almost age 106. 100% drug-free.

Bottom line is that although having a 24/7 caregiver / companion / health theorist grandson was good for her, it was a horrible deal for me, and for my own welfare (socially, financially, career-ically) I should have arranged for assisted living and eventually NH within the first year.

But... where this ties in to your predicament is that I have always wondered whether or not my sister and cousins would have been required to pay back the $40,000 (plus $500 each for Christmas, $300 for birthdays) if I had left. The fact is that they were all typical spend-even-more-than-you-earn-during-boom-times types, and would not be able to come up with it. Would the Medicaide rules result in putting a 100-year old granny out in the street? I can't believe that.

So, yes, I would like to know what TRULY happens when an elder gives away substantial assets during the 5-year period, and then requires NH paid by Medicaide.

It seems to me that this is a big HOLE in our culture where "we" don't see that an elder - who might be just a short while away from requiring massive support by the taxpayers - is not in a position to make substantial gifts to relatives. It should be unthinkable, but it isn't.

And believe me, that is not intended as a criticism of you. Or me, or my relatives. It's only natural to accept gifts from family, especially if they are somewhat reciprocal.

Well, good luck. There seem to be a number of Medicaide-planning experts here, so maybe you'll get an answer soon. I hope it works out for you and your mother.
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