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According to Simply Insurance, as of 2021 about 1.5 million people currently reside in nursing homes in the United States. Another one million elderly adults live in assisted living facilities. There are 15,600 nursing homes across America, with 1.7 million licensed beds inside those homes. The average stay in a nursing home is 835 days. According to Forbes, while few of us expect to end up in a long-term care facility, a 50-year-old has a 53-59 percent chance of entering a long-term care facility during his or her lifetime. As of July 2022, Medicaid was the primary payer for 62 percent of nursing home residents.
Medicare was paying for 13 percent, and the remaining 25 percent were either paying out-of-pocket or had purchased private insurance that covered the costs. Many people are under the erroneous belief that Medicare pays for long-term care. In fact, Medicare Part A covers skilled nursing care for medically necessary services for a very limited amount of time. Medicare is intended only for short-term services in situations where the person’s medical condition is expected to improve—in most situations, Medicare will pay for no more than 100 days. Stays that are longer than 21 days typically require patient co-pays.
So, without Medicaid, most people would be unable to afford nursing home care. There are many issues that can keep an individual from qualifying for Medicaid nursing home care. Having an experienced attorney to help ensure your long-term care costs are paid for by Medicaid can make a significant difference in your life. The Lovett & House Medicaid and nursing home planning attorneys can help ensure you can leave your hard-earned assets to your loved ones while still qualifying for Medicaid nursing home care.
As a resident of Englewood, you may have considered how you would pay for nursing home care for yourself—or perhaps for your parents. There are three nursing homes in Englewood, and 22 in nearby areas. The average cost for an Ohio nursing home is $7,300 per month for a semi-private nursing home room and $8,213 for a private room. Few people can afford this level of cost, making Medicaid eligibility a necessity.
Of course, planning several years in advance is always the best choice, as you can ensure your assets are protected and that you are eligible for Medicaid nursing home care when the time comes. If, however, you have not planned ahead, there may still be many ways the Lovett & House Medicaid planning attorneys can help. Our attorneys will comprehensively assess your situation, then present the best options for protecting your assets while qualifying for Medicaid.
Why Choose an Englewood Medicaid and Nursing Home Planning Attorney from Lovett & House?
The Lovett & House legal team is highly experienced; we have helped hundreds of those in nursing home crisis situations, as well as helping individuals who want to take the necessary steps to plan ahead. We can help you apply for Medicaid assistance, set up a Medicaid Trust, assist you in getting VA benefits, and help you with all types of estate planning issues. Attorney George Lovett is a well-known speaker and writer on Medicaid and Nursing Home Planning Issues. George has spoken to other attorneys, nursing home administrators, and family members hundreds of times on these subjects. If you or a loved one is facing a permanent nursing home stay, or just considering assisted living, we can help you plan in the best way possible, working hard to help your family keep your hard-earned dollars.
What is Involved in Medicaid and Nursing Home Planning?
One of the best ways to plan ahead for a nursing home is through the use of a Medicaid Asset Protection Trust (MAPT). Unfortunately, many people think they can simply transfer assets to their children or grandchildren when it is time for a nursing home. What they may not realize is that Medicaid has a five-year “look-back” period in which any transfer of assets will come under scrutiny and could prevent you from receiving Medicaid assistance.
A Medicaid Asset Protection Trust is designed to protect assets from being “counted” when determining eligibility for Medicaid. The trust must be created at least five years before you need long-term care to avoid jeopardizing your Medicaid eligibility. Assets placed into the MAPT are not considered countable for Medicaid unless you end up needing Medicaid long-term care benefits prior to the expiration of the five-year look-back period.
A MAPT can protect your primary residence, allowing you to live in your home just as you did before it was placed in the trust. MAPTs are irrevocable trusts, meaning once an asset is placed in the trust, you no longer have control of those assets, however, they can eventually be transferred to other family members.
What Are the Medicaid Requirements for Nursing Home Care?
The requirements for Medicaid eligibility in Ohio include:
- If you are 65 or older, disabled, or blind, your income must be no more than $2,523 as of 2022.
- You must be an Ohio resident and a U.S. citizen, or have proper immigration status
- You must require care for a minimum of 30 consecutive days
- Income that is not considered countable includes $50 per month for a personal needs allowance
- Assets are divided into exempt and available. Any asset not listed as exempt must be liquidated and applied toward the costs of nursing home care before you can receive Medicaid benefits. Exempt assets include $2,000 in cash assets or $3,000 for married spouses. One home is exempt (with an equity limit of $636,000) if you are planning to return to the home, or if a spouse, child, or disabled person resides in the home.
- One vehicle is exempt.
- You are entitled to an irrevocable funeral trust with a value of $1,500 or less.
- Household furnishings, furniture, clothing, jewelry, and other personal effects are exempt.
- If you receive Medicaid and live in a nursing home, you will be expected to spend most of your income on your care, keeping only the $50 per month as a personal needs allowance.
- If you meet the Medicaid financial and level of care requirements, are 60 or older, and a doctor certifies that you are able to live at home safely with assistance, you may qualify for Ohio’s PASSPORT Waiver which allows you to receive help with daily chores, personal care, nursing care, and transportation to and from medical appointments.
- If you are 59 or younger and meet Medicaid’s financial requirements and can stay in your home with assistance, you may qualify for Ohio’s Home Care Waiver Program after showing you would have to move to a nursing facility if you did not receive the waiver service in your home.
When Should You Engage in Medicaid and Nursing Home Planning?
Ideally, the sooner you engage in Medicaid and nursing home planning, the better, however, many of us simply do not expect to need nursing home care when it happens. A medical condition or an accident can send you into a long-term care facility much sooner than you ever anticipated. That being said, many people are blindsided by the need to enter a nursing home, perhaps by an unexpected yet serious illness, or an accident. At this point, the traditional tools used in Medicaid planning may not be available, therefore, it is essential that your attorney is highly experienced in Medicaid crisis planning.
How Can an Experienced Englewood Medicaid and Nursing Home Planning Attorney from Lovett & House Help?
The Lovett & House law firm has more than 100 positive Google reviews. Our very satisfied former clients are our best advertisement. We work hard for every client to ensure they receive the very best estate planning knowledge and advice possible. If you are facing a long-term care situation, we will immediately assess your situation, determining the best way to ensure your assets can go to your loved ones while you qualify for Medicaid assistance. Contact Lovett & House today to take advantage of our free five-minute phone call where we will discuss your needs for the future.