Georgia Medicaid Planning Nursing Home Care and Funeral Contracts

Georgia Medicaid Planning Nursing Home Care and Funeral Contracts

When we discuss countable and non-countable assets as it pertains to Medicaid qualification for nursing home care, funeral and burial contracts are also taken into consideration. Let’s recap from our prior post on countable assets.

Bank accounts – Up to $1500 may be placed in a bank account, revocable account, trust or other arrangement, and if it is designated as a burial fun, it will be excluded from the applicant’s countable assets. however, this exclusion must be reduced by the amount of any irrevocable burial funds such as that described in the next section, and the face value of any life insurance policy whose cash value is excluded. For a married couple, the $1500 exclusion applies to each spouse.

PRE-PAID FUNERAL/BURIAL

Under federal law, you are permitted to set aside money in an irrevocable pre-paid burial and funeral account established with a funeral home or in an irrevocable trust earmarked only for payment of your funeral and burial expenses (or that of your spouse, if any). Such amount of money will be excluded from your countable assets when you apply for Medicaid. note that while the federal law does not specify a limit to this amount, many states do just that, to prevent people taking advantage of this “loophole.” In PA, for example, the limit depends on what county you live in, and the amounts vary from around $10000 to $19000.

With a funeral home, the money must either be placed in an escrow account or trust account by the funeral home. Some states require that the contract specifically state that nay funds in the account not ultimately used for funeral and burial expenses of the applicant or spouse, if any, must be paid to the state if the applicant was on Medicaid. in any event, they should not put more into such an account than they believe they will actually need to pay for these expenses; having any sort of pre-arranged “deal” with the funeral home to pay the excess to their family is clearly illegal.

BURIAL INSURANCE – Any amount of life insurance earmarked for burial expenses of the applicant or spouse, if any, “burial insurance,” where the proceeds can only be used for burial expenses, is an excluded asset, and the face value of such a policy is not counted as part of the $1500 life insurance exemption.

BURIAL SPACES – Unlike the above, this is entirely exempt.

Georgia Medicaid Planning Nursing Home Care and Funeral Contracts

Ansari Law Firm

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