Medicaid Planning for Long Term Care
Last updated: May 15, 2015 at 3:38 am
Medicaid planning for long term care may involve giving away assets in order to qualify for Medicaid and avoid paying for nursing home care out of pocket. Strictly speaking this is not against the law, however many Americans do not understand the consequences of relying on Medicaid for their long term care needs.
The fact is these individuals who rely on Medicaid are giving up control of their long term care planning. According to a survey of financial advisers, Medicaid planning for long term care is not a popular choice with their clients because maintaining control of their health care is of the utmost importance.
Potential Drawbacks To Medicaid Planning
Once their money is gifted away, people must understand that they are irrevocably parting with it and they may never see it again.
Nursing home care is generally what is paid for by Medicaid and a particular nursing home you prefer may not accept Medicaid patients. With home health care being the first choice of most long term care patients it’s important to know that in very few states does Medicaid pay for home health care services.
Married couples most likely want the healthy spouse at home to be able to maintain a certain lifestyle. However, Medicaid rules generally allow them to keep a very modest amount of assets which often creates a hardship for the healthy spouse still at home.
Alternatives to Medicaid Planning for Long Term Care
Pay Your Own Way Those with significant wealth may want to foot the bill themselves. If you have several million in assets, you may be able to pay for 3 – 5 years of long term care while still being able to leave some assets for your children or other heirs.
Buy Long Term Care Insurance Many types of long term care insurance policies are available and if you have the health to qualify for coverage long term care insurance can provide you with substantial asset protection. Premiums are less expensive at younger ages so planning early can provide substantial savings.