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What Are the Rules for Medicaid Qualification (Part 7)? - Spousal Protections

For the final topic in our series on Medicaid qualification rules, we'll be looking at important information in regard to spousal protections. As with part six of our series, your Medicaid planning advisor can best help you determine how the rules apply to your specific circumstances in your specific locality. Before you get into the specifics, however, it’s always a good idea to familiarize yourself with the general federal guidelines for Medicaid qualification that apply everywhere. To start at the begining of our series, click here

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Spousal Protections

The spouses of nursing home residents are provided certain protections under Medicaid law. Here is a brief overview:

  • Snapshot of Couple’s Assets – With married applicants, Medicaid takes a “snapshot” of the couple’s assets when the ill spouse enters a hospital or long term care facility for at least a 30-day stay.
  • Community Spouse Resource...
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What Are the Rules for Medicaid Qualification (Part 6)? - Options

What Are the Rules for Medicaid Qualification (Part 6)? - Some Simple Planning Options

Below are possible options to keep in mind when considering Medicaid planning. As in part five of our series, your Medicaid planning advisor can best help you determine how the rules apply to your specific circumstances in your specific locality. Before you get into the specifics, however, it’s always a good idea to familiarize yourself with the general federal guidelines for Medicaid qualification that apply everywhere.

 

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  • If you are married, your home is exempt and cannot be taken if one spouse applies for Medicaid. If you are single or widowed, up to $552,000 of equity in your home is exempt (many states have raised the limit even higher). Some states permit a “Homestead Exemption” which protects a married or single applicant’s home regardless of value. Transferring your home to your children will result in immediate ineligibility for...
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What Are the Rules for Medicaid Qualification (Part 4)? - Allowable Income

As part 3 of our series, your Medicaid planning advisor can best help you determine how the rules apply to your specific circumstances in your specific locality. Before you get into the specifics, however, it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the general federal guidelines for Medicaid qualification that apply everywhere.

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Allowable Income

How much income are you allowed under Medicaid law?

There are different answers for the “community spouse” and the individual who resides in a nursing home.

  • Nursing home residents can only keep $60 a month as a personal needs allowance – the rest of their income must go to help cover the cost of their care.
  • If the resident is married, the community spouse can keep between $1,966.25 - $2,980.50 a month (in 2015), including income from the nursing home spouse.
  • Many states permit the community spouse to retain all of their individual income without limit. In other states, the community spouse...
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