My mom needs a new television. She needs to spend some money as she is on Medicaid Waiver and her account has went over $2,000. All she has is her checking account, but the store won't take checks. How would I go about purchasing this with her money so as not to make it look like she's giving me money.

I have POA so I could get cash out of her bank account, I could even transfer to my account, but I'm being very careful because it's likely she will go to the Nursing Home soon and she's already on Medicaid Waiver for home care so she would be on Medicaid from day 1.

My other question is how do I prove that I'm spending the money on her and not buying stuff for myself? I think it would be obvious that a 96 year old lady would not be using a table saw or a $400 computer printer but a 32" television she should be able to take with her to the Nursing Home.

We need to keep her account spend down to $2,000 but we also need to be mindful of the 5 year lookback.

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Go to a different store? I know checks are on the way out, but I'd think most big box stores would accept them. Wal-Mart does.
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I'm not sure of any amounts but my Aunt paid for her funeral plan when she got on Medicaid.
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I had the same issue when I was my father's POA. He was in the nursing home but not on Medicaid because the application was still pending. Your mom isn't even in the nursing home so you will have an easier time with the Medicaid people. Everything with my father happened so suddenly. He was in perfect health living alone and the next day he was an invalid. The problem wasn't with Medicaid it was with the nursing home, and like all nursing homes believe that they are supposed to be handed every cent someone has personally and will look to get from family as well. Even if the bill is getting paid every month.
I was his POA and spoke to an elder lawyer about it. I told her that he has other bills besides the nursing home who was being paid the monthly fee. They want to be paid a month in advance. They still want to collect their full monthly payment in cash even if it's being paid by Medicare and secondary insurance.
I did what the lawyer said. I paid off bills that he had. I bought him things that he needed. Like new clothes. His old style wasn't practical anymore because he was an invalid. He had other bills. I paid these bills and kept proof of payment.
When Medicaid saw he was over-incomed and there needed to be a "spend down" period I sent his Medicaid case worker copies of all the bills that were paid. Then he was approved for Medicaid and no problems.
You're the POA. Part of your responsibility is make sure your mom has things she needs. She needs a new tv. She needs groceries, a home with utilities, clothes, toiletries. You are legally entitled to collect some compensation as POA for doing all the work to make sure she has the things she needs.
Pay for everything out of her money and save all receipts for anything you buy for her. If you go to the store and buy her a soda, save the receipt. Save all cancelled checks, credit card statements, and proof of paid receipts.
If the store won't take a check for the new tv, go to a different store. Pay cash for the tv or put it on a credit card. Save the receipt for it though.
When Medicaid is doing the 5 year look back period, they're concerned with things like real estate being transferred, large amounts of money being withdrawn, and big purchases like cars and other real estate. Medicaid takes into consideration a person's living expenses and lifestyle before they applied for it. Did you know that a person on Medicaid is allowed to keep a car in their name? A person is allowed to have gifted sums of money $5,000 or less during the 5-year look back period.
Medicaid does not expect a person to live in total penury for years just in case they might have to apply for Medicaid at some point.
You'll be just fine with buying your mom a new tv so don't worry. Just save the receipt.
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Homecare123 May 2021
When you say that one is legally allowed to collect some compensation as POA, how much is an appropriate amount to charge? I’m wondering where to find a good chart.
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Do not close her account. Do not cash it in and co-mingle with yours, it will cause problems. Yearly you will need to report to Medicaid and provide a statement in her name. As long as the money in her account is being spent on her and under the 2k, there should be no problem. New clothes, hair done etc.

Charge the TV to your account. Then write a check to yourself for the exact amount spent with Moms TV on the memo line. Take a copy of the check and attach the sales slip. When u get ur statement, take a copy of that circling the cost of the tv. Keep the sale of the TV separate. Do not by something else that will show up on the sale receipt. Keep the receipt for her records.

I manage my nephews Special Needs Trust. Anytime I buy something authorized I actually attach the receipt to the statement the check is on.
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With the checking account can you obtain a Debit card?
That would solve the problem of a store not taking a check (I can not believe that a store will not accept a check, most don't even keep the check they run it and it is pretty much an automatic transfer.)
With the Debit card you would have not only the receipts from purchases but a monthly statement.
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Keep the itemized receipt from the store for the TV too.

The payment to the credit card should match the amount on the receipt and can be made immediately rather than waiting for the statement. Then the statement(s) will show the amount to the store and the payment for the same amount.

Mom's checkbook register gets a comment that says something like "[Brand] 32 inch TV $xxx.xx + $xx.xx tax = $xxx.xx"
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Hello Sgeorge24,

Is your Mom debt free? A great way to keep her account spend down is to pay off debts... make extra payments on mortgage, insurance, credit cards, etc.

As for the TV, I agree with isthisrealyreal.. great answer!

God Bless!
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I would pay for the tv with my credit card and then pay the credit card with one of moms checks. Keep the credit card statement with the cancelled check to prove that you bought mom's tv and mom paid for it.
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