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Planning to protect assets and benefits

Medicaid Planning enables the movement of countable, unprotected assets into non-countable, protected positions to legally shift the burden for the cost of an individual’s care onto the government. Additionally, Medicaid Planning attempts to ensure transfers of assets to heirs, fully protect healthy community spouses, and limit Estate Recovery. There are two primary Medicaid programs:

Medicaid Long Term Care Planning

Medicaid Long Term Care (hereafter LTC) is a Public-Private partnership, with rules to balance the cost of care between the patient and the government. LTC includes a variety of services for chronic and disabling conditions including care for health and daily-living provided by nursing home facilities and in-home care. LTC planning is not limited to low-income individuals and for most, planning is needed to qualify for LTC benefits. LTC planning falls into two categories:

Pre-Planning for Medicaid

Pre-planning is for the possible, eventual need of long-term care services and/or making intentional choices that will limit the overall exposure of assets and income to the costs of long term-care in the future. Unexpected circumstances can be somewhat planned for, but the individual’s health and ability to satisfy the 60-month lookback period could impact pre-planning efforts.

Crisis Planning for Medicaid

Crisis planning occurs when there is an imminent need for LTC services and eligibility needs to be established to avoid paying full cost for LTC services. There are fewer planning choices available with crisis planning as opposed to pre-planning.
Medicaid LTC also offers Waiver/Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) or access to Medicare PACE (Program of All-inclusive Care for the Elderly) Programs. These programs help to keep people in their homes and communities and may include benefits that provide home modifications. These programs can be applied for at the same time and in conjunction with the initial Medicaid application.

Planning For Medical Assistance

Medical Assistance is often referred to as health insurance for low income and medically needy individuals. To qualify, income and assets must be below established thresholds and the individual must meet the Aged, Blind, and/or Disabled Social Security definitions. Planning in this area usually involves moving excess countable resources into non-countable positions.

Medicaid planning does not begin and end with gaining eligibility for benefits. RCFS can help navigate these complex systems and ensure you obtain the benefits to which you are entitled. Please call us to learn more and schedule a consultation. •

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Our team has extensive experience in trust administration, social services, and government benefits. We can help you preserve and manage your assets and find human services and supports. Contact us for a free consultation.Contact RCFS
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