Single Person Owns Home In Nursing Home Medicaid Eligibility Attorney

Single Person Owns Home In Nursing Home Medicaid Eligibility Attorney

Our most typical case involving a single person will be that of also owning a home with some income.

Let’s use these facts:

M is single and has the following assets:

Bank accounts/CDs $42000

Home                          $250000

Car                               $12000

M’s monthly income:

Social Security            $900

M’s monthly expenses:

Nursing home fee       $5500

Health insurance premium $200

Miscellaneous (grooming etc)  $100

Analysis:

If M is already in the nursing home:

Total Assets. The home and auto are excluded, so we don’t count them for this purpose. That leaves a total of 42k of countable assets. She’s allowed to keep up to $2000 as her personal exclusion, so really her “spenddown” amount is actually 40k.

Net monthly expenses: Adding up her typical monthly expenses, the total is $5800. From this we subtract her income. Thus, her monthly out of pocket expenses come to $5800 – 900 = 4900. Clearly, she can’t afford the nursing home without outside help.

Medicaid eligibility: Without planning, M’s remaining savings will be completely gone in a little over 8 months. At that point, she should immediately qualify for Medicaid coverage of her nursing home bills. M’s SSI will continue to be paid to the NH even after she is on Medicaid. The Medicaid program will simply pick up the difference between her income and nursing home cost.

Let’s think:

Although M does not have a lot of savings, there is no reason to just spend it until it’s gone. WIth relateviely small amounts of countable cash, setup up a half-a-loaf strategy may not be cost effective because of the complexity and legal fees involved. Instead, she should try to spend down her extra $40,000 by:

Improving her house

Upgrading her auto

Pre-pay her own funeral and burial expenses

Pre-pay burial spaces for other family members

Alternatives: If there is still any money left after the above, she can certainly utilize the half-a-loaf method to gift half of that balance and use a promissory note or Medicaid annuity for the other half. Alternatively, if M is in a facility that does not accept Medicaid and wants to move to a facility that does, she can retain some of her savings to pay privately for a few months, and then apply for Medicaid coverage. Sometimes that will help her move up closer to the top of the waiting list for the new nursing home and secure placement sooner.

Single Person Owns Home In Nursing Home Medicaid Eligibility Attorney

Ansari Law Firm

Author Ansari Law Firm

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