Estate planning can be confusing and overwhelming especially if you have no one to help you. Our Buffalo elder law attorneys offer you Medicaid advice that you can consider before calling for a consultation.
Medicaid Advice | Emergency Medicaid Planning and Promissory Notes
As an experienced Buffalo Medicaid Law Lawyer, I am often contacted by people who have never done any planning for Medicaid. For people that never did any planning for Medicaid, there is still what’s known as emergency Medicaid planning. This is done when someone is already in a nursing home and about to apply for Medicaid. If you have the proper power of attorney, they’ll also be able to do this emergency Medicaid planning. One question we get about power of attorney is that you’re not giving up any powers or any rights by signing a power of attorney. You still have the right to make your own decisions, the agent has to act in your best interest. If they don’t do that, then you have the right to revoke the power of attorney.
Powers of attorney also automatically cease upon death, so their agent no longer has access to your bank accounts as soon as they find out about the death. Here again, power of attorney can be very variable but in the wrong hands, it can be very damaging. With emergency Medicaid planning, you can pretty much give away half your assets and use the other half for your nursing home care, in what they call a promissory note. This is something that can be done; you have to have that language in your power of attorney document.
Medicaid Advice | Spousal Allowances and Exemptions
As an experienced Buffalo Medicaid Law Attorney I am often asked about Medicaid Spousal Allowances and Exemptions. In the interest of not impoverishing a spouse that’s at home – they call it a community spouse – if your spouse is in a nursing home you have protections if you are at home. This is so you are not impoverished and can keep a certain number of assets and income so that your husband or wife in a nursing home will qualify for Medicaid. The resources of at least $74,000 to $119,000, you can keep as much as 50% of your assets. It depends on what your total assets are. There is a formula there. Income or combined income you can keep $2,980.50 plus 75% in excess of that, so your pensions and your other income. If you’re a community spouse, you can keep that income and your husband or wife who’s in the nursing home will qualify for nursing home care.
If you would like further Medicaid advice, please give our Buffalo elder law attorneys a call today to set up a consultation.