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  • Writer's pictureJames Dolenga

You don't need to go broke paying for long-term care

As we age, the likelihood of requiring long-term care increases. The cost of such care can be exorbitant, and many people rely on Medicaid to help cover these expenses. However, Medicaid has strict asset and income limits that must be met in order to qualify for long-term care coverage. In this blog post, we will explore these limits, the penalties for noncompliance, and how an attorney can help.

Asset Limits

Medicaid has strict asset limits for individuals seeking long-term care coverage. These limits vary by state, but generally, an individual's assets cannot exceed $2,000. This includes cash, investments, and other assets. However, some assets are exempt, such as a primary residence (up to a certain value) and personal belongings.

Income Limits

In addition to asset limits, Medicaid also has income limits for individuals seeking long-term care coverage. Again, these limits vary by state, but generally, an individual's income cannot exceed the cost of care. This means that if the cost of care is $5,000 per month, but an individual's income is $6,000 per month, they will not qualify for Medicaid long-term care coverage.

Penalties

If an individual has assets or income that exceed the Medicaid long-term care limits, they may be subject to penalties. These penalties can include a delay in coverage or a reduction in benefits. For example, if an individual transferred assets to a family member within the past five years in an attempt to meet the asset limits, they may be subject to a penalty period during which they will not be eligible for Medicaid long-term care coverage.

How an Attorney Can Help

Navigating Medicaid long-term care rules and regulations can be complex and confusing. An attorney who specializes in Medicaid planning can help individuals and families understand the eligibility requirements, maximize benefits, and avoid penalties. Attorneys can also assist with asset protection strategies, such as establishing trusts, that can help individuals meet the asset limits while also preserving their assets.

In addition, attorneys can help individuals and families with the application process for Medicaid long-term care coverage. This includes completing the necessary paperwork, gathering documentation, and ensuring that all eligibility requirements are met.

Conclusion

Medicaid long-term care can provide critical financial support for individuals who require extensive care as they age. However, strict asset and income limits must be met in order to qualify for coverage. If you or a loved one is in need of long-term care and is considering Medicaid, it's important to consult with an attorney who specializes in Medicaid planning. An attorney can help you understand the eligibility requirements, avoid penalties, and maximize benefits to ensure that you receive the care you need without putting your financial security at risk.

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