Though there are many complexities to Medicaid planning, it’s important to understand this: Medicaid is there to help families like yours, and Medicaid planning is the best way of insuring that you receive the benefits to assure the protection of your hard-earned assets.
The first step in Medicaid planning is education. The more you know about how Medicaid works, the better you will be able to look out for the interests of your family. It is important to consult with a professional who can provide insight into your specific situation.
Things to remember:
It’s never too late
Medicaid planning can begin anytime, even if your loved one is already living in a skilled care facility. But the sooner you plan, the more options you will have to protect what’s important to you.
You can keep your home
If you’re married, and you or your spouse needs to go into a nursing home, your home is exempt from Medicaid’s calculation of what your contribution to the cost of care should be. If you are unmarried or widowed and you go into a nursing home, your house may be exempt if you follow certain procedures. But planning is key to preserving your home.
Don’t give away the store
Since major changes to laws in 2006, “gifting” away your assets creates unforeseen circumstances for years. Far from protecting yourself, you will be undermining your own security.
Mind those safe harbors
Congress has created a number of “safe harbor” provisions for protecting your assets. These exempt certain assets and allow transfers to children or siblings who meet certain eligibility requirements, as well as putting assets in certain kinds of trusts.
Carefully choose when you apply
Applying too early can mean a longer wait for Medicaid qualification than necessary, while applying too late can mean having to pay for months of care you may not have had to. Rule of thumb: Do not apply for Medicaid without a plan to ensure you qualify.
Get the right help
Medicaid planning is a complex matter. You need expert assistance to keep your assets safe. The rules and regulations associated with obtaining Medicaid eligibility are quite complex, but a skilled consultant can be of invaluable assistance. Those who go it alone, or rely on the advice of someone not experienced in Medicaid planning, can easily run afoul of the law with consequent, negative results as far as eligibility is concerned.
The best advice we can give you is this: Start planning now. No one knows what the future will bring. The sooner you start preparing for your golden years, the fewer surprises there are likely to be. And a little planning now can make a big difference for you and your loved ones later on.
Once we have a plan, we work with our clients on creating a strategy. Many people think strategy and plan are the same but our consultants knows better. We know that plan is what we try to achieve and strategy is how we are going to achieve it.
we assist individuals and families with the complex process of becoming eligible for Medicaid while preserving valuable assets.
Average annual long term care costs in Indiana
Very basic video from CNN Money explaining cost of long term care
Typical care options and their definitions
What is Home Healthcare?
At its basic level, “home health care” means exactly what it sounds like – medical care provided in a patient’s home. Home health care can include broad care given by skilled medical professionals, including skilled nursing care, physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech therapy. Home health care can also include skilled, non-medical care, such as medical social services or assistance with daily living from a highly qualified home health aide. As the Medicare program describes, home health care is unique as a care setting not only because the care is provided in the home, but the care itself is “usually less expensive, more convenient, and just as effective” as care given in a hospital or skilled nursing facility.
What is Assisted Living?
Assisted living is often viewed as the best of both worlds. Residents have as much independence as they want with the knowledge that personal care and support services are available if they need them. Assisted living communities are designed to provide residents with assistance with basic ADLs (activities of daily living) such as bathing, grooming, dressing, and more. Some states also allow assisted living to offer medication assistance and/or reminders. Assisted living communities differ from nursing homes in that they don’t offer complex medical services.
Assisted living communities range from a stand alone residence to being one level of care in a CCRC (continuing care retirement community). The physical environment of an assisted living is often more appealing to both potential residents and their families. These communities offer a more home-like atmosphere with apartment styles that typically include studio and one bedroom models. Kitchenettes usually feature a small refrigerator and microwave.
What is a Nursing Home?
A nursing home is a place for people who don’t need to be in a hospital but can’t be cared for at home. Most nursing homes have nursing aides and skilled nurses on hand 24 hours a day.
Some nursing homes are set up like a hospital. The staff provides medical care, as well as physical, speech and occupational therapy. There might be a nurses’ station on each floor. Other nursing homes try to be more like home. They try to have a neighborhood feel. Often, they don’t have a fixed day-to-day schedule, and kitchens might be open to residents. Staff members are encouraged to develop relationships with residents.
Some nursing homes have special care units for people with serious memory problems such as Alzheimer’s disease. Some will let couples live together. Nursing homes are not only for the elderly, but for anyone who requires 24-hour care.
Most nursing homes also offer the option of shared rooms and private rooms. The price difference between the two options can be significant.