As you approach your senior years, you may begin to consider how best to plan for comfortable living arrangements, the protection of your assets and obtaining the health care and daily assistance you may need. A nursing home may be the right option, but one that requires extensive financial planning, considering the extensive costs of these services.
This is where The Law Office of Jeffrey A. Attia, PA can help. Our Southwest Florida law firm helps seniors and their families plan for the future. We provide comprehensive asset protection services that preserves your valuables while allowing you the right to crucial Medicaid benefits.
Medicaid Rules for Nursing Home Expenditures
Nursing home costs average over $90,000 per year, with some charging much more for adults with special needs. This high cost may be far out of reach at a time when you are retired and living on a fixed income. Yet, if your income exceeds the monthly Medicaid limit, you may not qualify for Medicaid benefits that could defray the enormous costs associated with assisted living facilities.
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid look back at your income for the past 60 months. You cannot, therefore, merely transfer your money and assets to your spouse or children just before entering a nursing care facility to qualify for Medicaid benefits.
That being said, we understand the importance in protecting and providing for your children and spouse. We help your spouse take advantage of the spousal impoverishment provisions that protect their funds from depletion to pay for your long-term care. We also discuss arrangements that preserve the inheritance you planned to leave to your children, which can be particularly complex in unique family situations, such as wanting to leave an inheritance to children from an earlier marriage.
Protecting Assets While Qualifying for Medicaid
Asset protection provides you with a legal, viable means of qualifying for Medicaid without having to sacrifice everything you worked so hard to attain. Options to consider may include:
- Trust. You may put your assets in a trust, but Medicaid can touch these funds if the trust is not correctly constructed.
- Miller trust. When a Medicaid applicant’s income exceeds the qualifying limit but cannot afford to pay for nursing home care, a Miller trust can be established, whereby some or all of their income can be allocated into the trust, thus, enabling the applicant to meet Medicaid’s income threshold requirement.
Although we advise long-range planning, we are also able to help in emergency circumstances in which an unexpected illness or injury necessitates nursing home care. We are often able to locate sources of immediate funding as we begin the process of arranging for a long-range asset protection plan.
Consult With Our Fort Myers Estate Planning Attorney About Funding Your Long-Term Care
You may be able to qualify for Medicaid assistance to pay for nursing home care while also protecting your hard-earned assets. The Law Office of Jeffrey A. Attia can guide you in creating a long-term asset protection plan or help you take immediate action in a crisis. Schedule a consultation with our Fort Myers estate planning attorney today at 239.919.2318 to discuss your options.