Medicaid is a joint federal and state program that pays for a home health aide or nursing home for qualifying individuals. Many believe that they cannot qualify for Medicaid. However, this is a very common misconception. The truth is that with the proper planning, many can qualify. We can work together to create a plan that will protect your assets and make you eligible for benefits when you need them.
When applying at your local Department of Social Services considers three factors:
- The need of the applicant to receive the care they are seeking.
- The income of the applicant and their spouse, including Social Security, pension, distributions from retirement accounts, rental and investment income.
- The resources or assets of the applicant and their spouse, including but not limited to the value of their house, investments, savings and cash value of insurance policies.
The criteria for the above factors differ depending on the program you are applying for.
Different Medicaid Program
Community Based Medicaid (home health aide)
Most people who require assistance with the activities of daily living would prefer to remain in their home and receive the assistance of a home health aide. The cost could well exceed $4,000 per month. Fortunately there is no look back period on uncompensated transfers when applying for Community based Medicaid. There are however, income requirements when applying for community based Medicaid. Andrew M. Lamkin is an experienced Elder Law Attorney in New York and can work with you to protect your assets and income should you require the assistance of a home health aide.
- Do you currently pay privately for home care services?
- Are you concerned that you would not be able to retain the aide that you currently employ?
Institutional Medicaid (Nursing Home)
For those who must reside in a Nursing Facility, the Institutional Medicaid program is a payment option to strongly consider. When applying for Institutional Medicaid, the local Department of Social Services will look back five (5) years for uncompensated transfers you have made. The total value of these transfers will create a penalty period during which you will be required to pay privately for the care. Transfers to spouse and disabled children are not considered in the five year period and do not create a penalty period.
However, proper planning can protect your assets so that you will be eligible for Medicaid when you need to apply. An experienced Elder Law Attorney can also reduce the penalty period so that if you have not properly planned, some of your assets will be protected.
Pooled Income Trusts
When receiving Community Based Medicaid, you are allowed to keep $800 per month of your income, plus any costs you incur from health insurance premiums. Your additional income (called a “spenddown”) must be used on the cost of your care, with Medicaid paying for the remainder.
A Pooled Income Trust is a vehicle used to protect this “spenddown” so that your income can be used to pay yours household bills.
How can a New York Medicaid Lawyer help?
Obtaining Medicaid is a complicated application and eligibility process. The Law Office of Andrew M. Lamkin, P.C. is aware of all the intricacies of the relative laws and can work with you to determine the best way to protect your assets and income for your family.
Call 516-605-0625 or contact me online to schedule an appointment with an experienced Long Island (LI)Medicaid Attorney. I am available to meet with you at your home or my office.