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Wednesday, February 10, 2021

Using Estate Planning to Prepare for Medicaid

Long-term care involves not only a loss of personal autonomy; it also comes at a tremendous financial price. Proper planning can help your family prepare for the financial toll and protect assets for future generations. 

Long-term care can be very expensive, especially around-the-clock nursing home care. Most people end up paying for nursing home care out of their savings until they run out, at which point they can qualify for Medicaid to pick up the cost. 

Medicaid rules require that recipients have no more than $2,000 in "countable" assets (the figure may be somewhat higher in some states) and limited income. Any excess assets need to be spent down before you can qualify for Medicaid. In addition, in order to be eligible for Medicaid, you cannot have recently transferred assets. If you transfer assets within five years of applying for Medicaid, you may be subject to a penalty period during which you cannot receive certain benefits. After you die, Medicaid also has the right to recover from your estate, which in the case of a Medicaid recipient usually means only the house.

Careful planning in advance can help protect your estate for your spouse or children. If you make a plan before you need long-term care, you may have the luxury of distributing or protecting your assets in advance. This way, when you do need long-term care, you will quickly qualify for Medicaid benefits. 

At Severns & Howard our attorneys can help you to find the best way to make sure your wishes are carried out while protecting your assets to allow you to leave a legacy and plan for your future long term care needs.   For more information and to schedule a free intake call with our paralegal Alesha Dugger, please call our office at 317-817-0300.

 

Article Provided by:  ElderLaw Answers



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