Medicaid is the sole government benefit that helps qualifying persons pay for their long-term care costs. If you are interested in learning more about the common myths of Medicaid, reach out to our skilled Montgomery County, PA wills, trusts & estates attorneys. Our legal team is on your side. Give us a call today to get started with our firm.
What are the most typical myths about Medicaid?
- To be able to qualify for Medicaid, you should transfer your assets to your children. Medicaid places a penalty on an applicant who transmits or gifts assets out of his or her name to another person or entity without obtaining fair market value in return. The penalty set is a period of time that Medicaid will not pay for the applicant’s care. The length of the penalty period is defined, based upon the number of assets transferred within five years of the date of the application for Medicaid. However, proper planning and consideration must be exerted if you or your loved one are contemplating transferring assets.
- Medicare will cover my long-term care expenses. Medicare’s coverage of long-term care expenses is fairly limited. Medicare protects only up to 100 days of “skilled nursing care” per illness. To meet these requirements, you must join a Medicare-approved “skilled nursing facility” or nursing home within thirty days of a hospital stay that lasted at least three days. Additionally, you must be exhibiting signs of improvement while in the facility or your Medicare coverage will be terminated. The care supplied in a nursing home must be for the exact condition as delivered during the hospital stay. Once Medicare coverage for your nursing home expenses is completed, you will need to either privately pay for long-term care expenses or qualify for Medicaid.
- You need to be broke to qualify for Medicaid. Medicaid helps disadvantaged individuals pay for their long-term care costs, but you do not need to be completely impoverished to qualify. A single Medicaid applicant can have no more than $2,000 in assets in order to qualify for Medicaid, but there are some assets that are believed noncountable.
- A prenuptial agreement will protect my assets from being counted if my spouse needs Medicaid. A prenuptial agreement does not keep your property separate for purposes of Medicaid eligibility. The goal of such an agreement is to keep spouses’ property individual, in the event of death or divorce. Medicaid does not honor the terms of prenuptial agreements.
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