If you are thinking about Medicaid, you should speak to a firm that specializes in that area of law as soon as possible. There is really no time to waste – all you are wasting is money and adding stress. The sooner you get going on this, the sooner you may be eligible for Medicaid.
When we hear the word “crisis,” we think of disasters or calamities of epic proportions. Well, that is where many Americans find themselves when they (or a family member) try to stay above water financially when dealing with the outrageous costs involved with senior care – especially when care facilities are involved.
Accordingly, “crisis planning” in this context is planning for those who have an imminent need for Medicaid eligibility.
Along with the devastating news, the neurologist recommends that your spouse be placed in a nursing home today. You have no idea what this will cost, let alone how you will pay for it. In short order, you learn that Medicare will not pay, especially for the long-term. You become familiar with Medicaid but have no idea whether your spouse qualifies or even how to apply. To make matters worse, everyone you talk to is giving you a different answer.
Before facing a situation like this, you need to discuss the Medicaid planning and application process with an experienced elder law attorney. An elder law attorney will have the necessary skills and contacts required to help you address the important issues, create a strategy, engage and direct the required healthcare staff, and work with you to get the Medicaid application approved by your state Medicaid agency.
Medicare still remains somewhat of a mystery to most Americans, like the hypothetical couple above. Many people are under the impression that Medicare will cover all of the expenses for nursing home care.
That is not the case. The most Medicare will cover is the first 100 days and this will not be the full amount, even if you are eligible at all.
Other people believe that Medicare is only for the poor. That also is not the case. Medicare can help pay for long-term care in certain circumstances, and eligibility is not income-dependent.
For most people, Medicaid only becomes an option after Medicare benefits are exhausted. But what many people don’t realize is that Medicaid benefits are not automatic. In fact, to receive Medicaid, a patient and the patient’s spouse (if married) must first “spend down” their “countable” assets. In Michigan that limit is $2,000 for a single person, but gets more complex for married couples. There also are categories of assets that will be automatically exempt for purposes of qualification.
Actually, things can get complicated quite quickly. What do I do to protect assets? What do I do to convert assets without getting in trouble? Do I apply before or after we start getting care (and bills)?
These are all valid questions, and rather than attempting to answer them on your own with everything else that is swirling around you, you should seek professional advice from a qualified attorney who practices in Medicaid planning, understands the Medicaid system and can help you get organized for the future.
We are all most vulnerable in circumstances when we “don’t know what we don’t know.” Know your legal rights … before it is too late.
Are you or a loved one faced with long-term care expenses looming in the near future? Are you wondering what you can do to help protect assets now in the event long-term care is needed? Are you wondering how to protect the family farm or cottage?
Your Estate Plan should take in to account the fact you may need long-term care in the future. However, there are things you can do now that can help protect assets in the near future.
Pre-Planning is working with a family to figure out what the options are before a person actually needs care. We have more options available to us if we have time to plan. This does not mean you can protect everything, it does mean you have taken all the steps you can to protect as much as possible.
Come and see one of our experienced Medicaid Planners today to find out if there is a plan that can help you or your family.
If you are thinking about Medicaid, you should speak to a firm that specializes in that area of law as soon as possible. There is really no time to waste—all you are wasting is money and adding stress. The sooner you get going on this, the sooner you may be eligible for Medicaid and the more you you may be able to save.