Medicaid is one of the largest government programs and one of the largest health care systems in the United States. It is one of the most costly programs the Federal government conducts. Medicaid rules and regulations are complex, conflicting and misleading. Complicating matters even more, Medicaid is administered by state social service agencies. Thusly, state agencies may set their own rules and regulations which may vary widely from state to state.
Medicaid planning can include married couples, single persons, and widows or widowers. Depending on the applicant's circumstances, different Medicaid rules and different criteria may apply for their assets, income or a combination of both.
It is not uncommon for couples of advanced years to have one spouse become so incapacitated that they have to enter a long-term nursing care facility. The remaining spouse is called the “community spouse.” Experienced attorneys can make arrangements for the institutionalized spouse to receive Medicaid, and leave the community spouse with sufficient assets and income so they can continue to live in the marital home in relative comfort.
There is a widespread misconception that in order to receive Medicaid funding, one cannot own a home or any residential property. Under the Medicaid rules, the homestead is specifically exempt from consideration as an asset by Medicaid rules. However, care must be taken for estate planning because under the Medicaid guidelines, there is a ceiling for assets which the community spouse may hold.
The Law Firm of Lewis C. Edelstein, Esq., P.C. has a long history of long term care planning and Medicaid applications and has been successful in obtaining benefits for their clients.