MEDICAID AND LONG-TERM CARE
What is Medicaid?
Medicaid is a federal and state program that helps qualified individuals pay for health care. The Medicaid program has several insurance options available, ranging from basic medical coverage to nursing home programs. While Medicaid is reserved for those who have limited income and resources, there are ways for individuals to qualify even when it seems their income or assets are too high. We help individuals develop successful long-term care plans, submit their Medicaid applications, and protect their estate.
Do I Qualify for Medicaid?
You will need to submit an application and a Medicaid worker will ultimately be the one that decides if you qualify. First, however, you will need to submit proof of your income, such as social security, retirement, pensions, etc. You will also need to have proof of your assets, such as bank accounts, property, stocks, cash, etc. It is crucial that this application is filled out correctly. Many individuals have disqualified themselves from the Medicaid program by filing their application without any financial planning. While Medicaid has very specific requirements, there are numerous ways in which you can legally reduce your assets and income so you qualify for the program. For example, with correct planning you can transfer your assets to other people, place them in trust, or give them to your spouse.
Will Medicaid Pay for a Nursing Home?
Medicaid often helps qualified individuals to pay for nursing home care. Nursing home programs are only one type of resource that Medicaid offers. The amount Medicaid pays towards your nursing home care depends on your income. If your income is too high, you may be required to help pay some of the monthly costs. Medicaid will allow allow you to keep a certain amount of money for personal needs, medical insurance, and past medical bills. Additionally, if you have a spouse that is still living, your spouse may be able to keep part of your income.
Do I have to Pay Medicaid back?
Many people believe that once they qualify for Medicaid, Medicaid will provide health care free of charge. This is only partly true. Once you qualify for Medicaid the State of Utah will not take any of your property or assets. However, after you have died the State of Utah will typically initiate “Estate Recovery.” This means that the State of Utah may try to recover costs paid by Medicaid for certain types of healthcare. The state recovers these costs by putting liens on your property, selling your assets, or taking funds that you left behind. However, there are several situations where certain assets can be protected, left for family, or used for other purposes.