- John Todd
“And the Inheritance goes to . . . the NURSING HOME!”
Just last week I was talking with a couple friends, and the subject of “hidden money” came up.
One of them owns a towing service, and it was mentioned that sometimes people have valuables in their car when it get impounded. Sometimes, the people refuse to pay the towing / impound bill and eventually lose the car and the treasure inside. One car had a suitcase of baseball cards – which is now sitting in his office . . . and has been for over 20 years!
Another friend told about buying a house, and during a remodel, found bags of money in the ceiling.
My parents bought a house the supposedly belonged to a boot-legger in the hills of the eastern United States. It is thought that he buried some treasure, and several relatives have dropped by to ask if they could use a metal detector in the yard.
When we hear these stories, our heart pumps a little faster. What if WE could discover a rare treasure? What if we could come into some unexpected money? What if we have a rich uncle somewhere that will leave us a handsome inheritance?
Speaking of an Inheritance, it reminds me of one of my first customers after I quit working in the Long-Term Care Medicaid office.
Jane was in one of our local Nursing Homes. When she needed nursing home care, she had about $210K. She had been private paying for about a year, spending around $9,000 EACH MONTH. In a year, that was over $105,000 she had spent for her own care.
Then one day she asked the Business Office Manager of the nursing home whether she could leave any inheritance to her kids or grandkids. Because in less than one more year, she would be flat broke. That’s when the family was referred to me.
Fortunately for THEM, they came to me instead of asking directly at the Medicaid Office, because the only answer they would be allowed to give is, “You have to keep private paying for your care until you have spent ALL YOUR LIFE SAVINGS down to your last $2,000. When that happens, come back and see us.”
WHAT? You mean the INHERITANCE goes to the Nursing Home?
There are advanced planning techniques, using the rules written right in the Medicaid rules, that can allow a Single person to GIFT about HALF their assets to a family member, and still be on track to receive Nursing Home Medicaid assistance when they run out of money.
For a COUPLE, when one of them needs Nursing Home care, they can preserve VIRTUALLY ALL their assets for the well spouse in the community, and receive Medicaid for the spouse in care.
And why not? They paid into the pot during all their working years. Long-Term Care Medicaid is funded indirectly from Social Security withholding. Everyone can see that helping people STAY as healthy as possible using Medicaid funds is less expensive than covering regular HOSPITAL visits through Medicare.
In Jane’s case, we were able to help her gift $53,000 to her grandchildren immediately. Then, we “repositioned” her remaining assets according to the rules, and showed what we did to Medicaid. By the time we finished, Grandma was set to qualify for Medicaid in 7 more months, and then would be able to reduce her care costs by about $7,000 per month for the rest of her life.
What about YOUR family?
Is the inheritance going to the Nursing Home?
Or are you going to get help so that some or most of the LIFE SAVINGS goes to your children, grandchildren, or even your favorite charity?
I’d love to hear about your planning – or any question you might have about Long-Term Care Medicaid.
I read every email, personally, although I don’t promise to always respond.
If you need a free initial consultation to explore YOUR options, please write or call.