Michigan Medicaid Income and Asset Limits 2023 For Nursing Home Care

medicaid nursing home Jun 16, 2023
healthy Michigan plan

This article about Michigan Medicaid income and asset limits in 2023 by attorney Nicole Wipp is specific to what is commonly known as "long-term care Medicaid" (Medicaid in nursing homes) and not to "regular Medicaid" (Medicaid for working and younger persons). It is not intended to be legal advice but for general informational purposes only. For legal advice on Medicaid eligibility for yourself or a loved one for long-term care, please get in touch with our firm at (248)278-1511.

First, Understand the Different Medicaid Programs That May Be Available for Care

First, separating the Medicaid programs available in Michigan for long-term care is important.

First, there is community Medicaid, which is Medicaid at home or in a facility that is less than a skilled care facility, and "nursing home Medicaid," which is Medicaid in what is legally known as a skilled nursing facility (SNF).

This is very important because the rules for Medicaid benefits are different - and these differences cause people to be confused and make bad decisions. If you are considering applying for nursing home Medicaid, you need to be clear about the differences so you don't get confused and make these mistakes!

For example, an assisted living facility is not a SNF, and this includes most "memory care" facilities. Adult foster care, home care, and care in an independent living facility is not SNF care.

The issue is that people commonly think memory care and assisted living are skilled care and that they can get the same level of Medicaid benefits that they can in a SNF facility. Legally, it most often isn't. If you aren't sure, you need to ask someone at the facility if they are a skilled care facility!

This simple question can save you months of problems and can also save you tens to hundreds of thousands of dollars.

What is the Income Limit To Receive Nursing Home Medicaid Benefits?

Although the rules for community Medicaid are very different, when it comes to nursing home Medicaid, there really isn't an income limit. However, as a practical matter, if an applicant's income exceeds the monthly cost of the facility, it is most likely that they will not be eligible for SNF Medicaid benefits.

That being said, this is highly unlikely, in our experience. Most SNF facilities in Michigan cost $10,000 a month or more. It is extremely rare for a person's income to exceed that amount.

Also, for SNF Medicaid, only the applicant's income is considered. If there is a spouse that is not applying for Medicaid (this is true in most circumstances), the spouse's income is not considered.

What is Considered Income?

The general rule is, if it looks like income, it probably is income. The below list is just some examples of what is considered income - but is not the complete list. If you have questions about what may be considered income in your situation in Michigan, consult with a qualified attorney.

  • Paycheck (employment) Income

  • Social Security

  • Pension

  • Rental Income

  • Land contract payments

  • Veteran's benefits


Jointly Owned Assets

Those assets belonging to a single ownership group are merged together. It is possible to view assets as unaccountable. The value of a person whose assets belong together cannot exceed the amount they have as a separate entity.Please contact your local DHS department. Alternatively, your local solicitor could be in touch. Find a legal agency in your area using this page. Divestments are transactions that are performed for less than their market value.

Qualify for Medicaid: Countable Assets and Exempt Assets

In some instances a lot of money is held in a bank account, in a bank account or a personal loan account in which a resident does not reside. Moreover, some of these assets are non-taxable. Exclusions cover personal possessions, furniture, automobiles, irrevocable funeral trusts, and usually the primary home of one. In 2022, their home equity would be minus 636,000. In the same situation, Medicaid applicants reside in the home. Equity interest refers to the sum that the applicant owns. When non-applicant spouses live in their homes they'll get exemptions automatically. 


Exempt Assets for 2022 for an applicant in Michigan include

ii. '. 2,000 or fewer if a single man. When assets exceed a limit the applicants will be deemed non-eligible until the end of the month. Iii. Personal effects of home items ii. Upon request the home is exempt (limit of equity $566,000.)

income limitsincome limits

Learn more about Michigan Medicaid Applications here. 

Learn more about applying for medicaid in Michigan here.

What does spend down mean in Michigan?

Spend down equates to a person who is eligible for Medicaid without income. If you want Medicaid, your allowed medical expenses should exceed the cost. Your spending reducing amount is the amount your income exceeds your Medicaid allowance.

How do I protect my assets from Medicaid in Michigan?

Medicaid Planning: Can you save a lot of cash and time? Make your property a priority. Then it is time to change the world. The right to a refund of the funds. ... Irrevocable trusts. . Prepayment of the cost. ' Giving and transfers. ... Convert taxable assets to exempt... . Paying bills / expenses. ... Transfers for husbands.

What is the "Look-back" Period for Medicaid in Michigan?

During this period of five years, a term was referred to as lookback periods. The State Medicaid Department then examines whether an individual Medicaid application transferred assets at less than the market value during that period. Adult people in a poor position are able to earn a modest wage for their work. Kindness. Those pregnant or nursing. Persons 65 and younger. Those with disabilities. Ages Income levels. How many people do you know? Whether pregnant or disabled. Call your local Medicaid program. You must reside in the state in which your benefit application is filed. Apply by submitting a medical application online.

What Is A "Penalty Period" and How Does It Impact Whether I Will Receive Medicaid Benefits?

When you offer someone something for less than it is worth, it's called a divestment. A prime example of this is selling a car to your grandchild for a dollar. If that car's fair market value (Kelley Blue Book value, for example) is $1,500, you have divested $1,499 by law. This divestment will result in a penalty period where you cannot receive Medicaid benefits.

Assuming the applicant does not have income in excess of the private pay rate, the applicant would not be precluded from seeking Medicaid assistance based on income. However, as explained below, the applicant’s income will be the basis for determining the patient-pay amount (PPA), which is the amount the applicant must contribute per month before Medicaid will kick in. The PPA is determined by applying a formula.

     Page Contents...     Income Eligibility Rules     Defining Income     Patient-Pay Amount     Medicaid Planning Options Impacting Income   

I.   Income Eligibility Rules

§5.1   For nursing home care, the benchmark for income eligibility for an applicant is the monthly private pay rate for the nursing home where the applicant resides. The average statewide cost of a nursing home is over $9,000, according to the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). Assuming the applicant does not have income in excess of the private pay rate, the applicant would not be precluded from seeking Medicaid assistance based on income. However, as explained below, the applicant’s income will be the basis for determining the patient-pay amount (PPA), which is the amount the applicant must contribute per month before Medicaid will kick in. The PPA is determined by applying a formula. See §§5.13–5.23.

RFT Item 248 sets the income limit for an applicant seeking Medicaid assistance through a MI Choice Waiver (MI Choice) or the Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE). See exhibit 3.1 for the annual inflation-adjusted amount. $2,742. Under current Medicaid rules, there is no process by which an individual whose income exceeds the income limit for MI Choice and PACE may spend down income to qualify. Nor is there any way to divert income to a spouse in the MI Choice and PACE programs. In other words, a person who needs nursing home–level care but who could remain in the person’s home with limited assistance through MI Choice or PACE would have to enter a nursing home to become eligible for Medicaid assistance if the person has income even $1 above the income cap.