When it comes to Medicaid planning, most seniors assume that they will have to sell their assets to be eligible for Medicaid. Many elders refrain from Medicaid planning as they think their expensive home will prevent them from qualifying for the aid. Some seniors blindly follow Medicaid advice given by their friends and relatives only to experience pitfalls later. Since the rules of Medicaid planning are complicated, it’s imperative to fall for misconceptions and myths. So, it’s best to first look for an elder law attorney near me before considering Medicaid planning.
In this blog, we have debunked some common myths and misconceptions regarding Medicaid planning.
Myth #1-The length of the look-back period and penalty period is same?
Everyone who has applied for Medicaid benefits has to go through a “look-back period” review process. In this process, Medicaid reviews the applicant’s financial transactions history like tax returns, deeds, assets, gifts, etc. This ensures the applicant is financially unsound to pay for their medical bills and nursing services. Suppose Medicaid finds that an applicant has made gifts or transferred cash beyond the state limit within that ‘look-back period’ to be able to qualify for benefits. In that case, they can impose a ‘penalty period’ on the applicant.
It’s assumed that the duration of the look-back period and penalty period is the same. However, it’s not so. The penalty period is determined based on the non-exempt assets transferred by the applicant during the look-back period.
Myth #2-One spouse can’t keep their income if the other one is receiving Medicaid benefits.
In Medicaid planning eligibility involving spouses, the assets of one spouse are counted as another’s assets for qualification. However, the income is treated individually. There is a name on the check rule in many states according to which only the applicant spouse’s income is counted for Medicaid eligibility.
Myth #3-One should spend all their money to be able to receive Medicaid benefits.
This is one of the most common misconceptions about Medicaid benefits that result in poor Medicaid planning. Under the Medicaid eligibility rules, married couples and individuals are allowed to own certain types of assets. The assets exempt from the eligibility requirement include family residence, household furnishings, one vehicle, etc. The best approach to Medicaid planning is consulting an elder abuse attorney near me Virginia Beach, before taking any steps.
Myth #4: One can spend down their assets only on nursing bills or medical expenses.
This is a misconception that prevents one from making the most out of their Medicaid planning. With the help of an experienced elder law attorney, you can plan to utilize the excess resources on your family members and spouse.
Myth #5- If one has entered the nursing facility; it’s too late for Medicaid planning
If you entered the nursing facility without making a Medicaid plan, you could still protect your assets and resources. Various laws allow a person to save anywhere from 40 to 100% of their personal assets after being institutionalized. …