How Much Money Can You Have and Still Qualify for Medicaid?

In order to be eligible for Medicaid benefits a nursing home resident may have no more than $2,000 in "countable" assets (the figure may be somewhat higher in some states). Note that Medicaid is a state-run program, so the rules are somewhat different in each state, although there are federal guidelines. The spouse of a nursing home resident--called the "community spouse" -- is limited to one half of the couple's joint…

Continue ReadingHow Much Money Can You Have and Still Qualify for Medicaid?

Medicaid’s Attempt to Ensure the Healthy Spouse Has Enough Income: The MMMNA

When most of a couple's income is in the name of the spouse who is receiving Medicaid, the spouse remaining in the community may wonder what he or she will live on. Medicaid has created some protections for the community spouse. Although Medicaid limits the assets that the spouse of a Medicaid applicant can retain, the income of the “community spouse” is not counted in determining the Medicaid applicant’s eligibility. Only…

Continue ReadingMedicaid’s Attempt to Ensure the Healthy Spouse Has Enough Income: The MMMNA

Medicaid’s Home Care Waivers Can Help You Avoid a Nursing Home, But the Line May Be Long

Medicaid long-term care benefits traditionally pay mainly for nursing home care, but the federal government can grant “waivers” to states allowing them to expand Medicaid to include home and community-based services. The downside is that receiving care in a nursing home is an entitlement, while getting care at home is not.   Medicaid is a joint federal-state program that provides health insurance coverage to low-income children, seniors, and people with disabilities.…

Continue ReadingMedicaid’s Home Care Waivers Can Help You Avoid a Nursing Home, But the Line May Be Long

Annual Long-Term Care Survey Finds Steep Rise in Assisted Living Facility Costs Amid Pandemic

All long-term care costs rose sharply in 2020, but assisted living facility costs increased the most, according to Genworth’s latest annual Cost of Care Survey. The across-the-board rises were due in part to increased costs brought on by the coronavirus pandemic. In the past year, assisted living facility rates grew 6.15 percent for a median cost of $51,600 per year or $4,300 per month. Genworth also reports that the median annual…

Continue ReadingAnnual Long-Term Care Survey Finds Steep Rise in Assisted Living Facility Costs Amid Pandemic

The Top Eight Mistakes People Make With Medicaid

Medicaid planning can be a difficult and confusing process. The following are some common mistakes people make when planning to apply for Medicaid. Thinking it's too late to plan. It's almost never too late to take planning steps, even after a senior has moved to a nursing home. Giving away assets too early. First, it's your money (or your house, or both). Make sure you take care of yourself first. Don't…

Continue ReadingThe Top Eight Mistakes People Make With Medicaid

What is Long-Term Care and Who Provides It?

Long-term care is the care you need if you can’t perform daily activities on your own for an extended period of time. There are a number of different ways that long-term care can be provided. Most long-term care involves assisting with basic personal needs rather than providing medical care. You are usually determined to need long-term care if you need help with two or more “activities of daily living” (such as…

Continue ReadingWhat is Long-Term Care and Who Provides It?

Three Reasons Why Giving Your House to Your Children Isn’t the Best Way to Protect It From Medicaid

You may be afraid of losing your home if you have to enter a nursing home and apply for Medicaid. While this fear is well-founded, transferring the home to your children is usually not the best way to protect it. Although you generally do not have to sell your home in order to qualify for Medicaid coverage of nursing home care, the state could file a claim against the house after…

Continue ReadingThree Reasons Why Giving Your House to Your Children Isn’t the Best Way to Protect It From Medicaid

What to Look for in a Pre-Paid Funeral Plan

Prepaying for your funeral is one way to ease the burden on your family following your death and make sure your wishes are carried out. But pre-paid funeral plans come with risks, so you need to exercise care when purchasing a plan. Funerals are expensive and can take a lot of effort to plan. To help relieve your family of some of this expense and effort, you can pay for your…

Continue ReadingWhat to Look for in a Pre-Paid Funeral Plan

How Medicaid Regards Your Home in Pennsylvania or New Jersey

Nursing home residents do not automatically have to sell their other homes in order to qualify for Medicaid. That doesn't mean, however, that their homes are completely protected. In Pennsylvania and New Jersey, the state will likely put a lien on a house while the resident is living and attempt to recover the property after the resident has passed away. Attorney E. Nego Pile, Southeastern Pennsylvania’s go-to elder law advocate, can help…

Continue ReadingHow Medicaid Regards Your Home in Pennsylvania or New Jersey

Free Tax Preparation Help for Seniors in Pennsylvania and New Jersey

Good grief, it’s tax time again! Attorney E. Nego Pile, an estate planning lawyer with considerable experience in tax matters, offers this advice to the elderly in Pennsylvania and New Jersey: Seniors and retirees should know that they may qualify for free tax preparation help. Specifically, they may be able to use online tax preparation software free of charge. Besides that, seniors are eligible for free counseling assistance from the IRS. In fact,…

Continue ReadingFree Tax Preparation Help for Seniors in Pennsylvania and New Jersey