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Articles Posted in Medicaid & Medicare

AdobeStock_86658626-300x190Few crises are more stressful than those related to health and long-term care. It is hard enough to navigate these complex issues during the best of times. In a world full of uncertainty, they become even more stressful and urgent.

As we all wrestle with the day-to-day reality of COVID-19, the already daunting task of figuring out how to sustainably support necessary home care, medical services, nursing home costs, and other critical expenses quickly becomes overwhelming.

And the situation is exponentially worse if you’ve waited until you’re in crisis to address the important questions of how to pay for critical services, protect your assets, and ensure your comfort, security, and quality of life.

Brendan-mug-shot-e1595015692932-281x300By Brendan Daly

As an elder law attorney, I’ve been advocating for my senior clients for twenty years, but I recently discovered that my 78-year-old dad still has a few things to teach me.

It was a lesson I maybe should have seen coming.

home-sign-300x200“Promise me you won’t ever put me in a nursing home.” Our parents would make us sign in blood if they could.

Fear of losing their independence and way of life is a tremendous concern among Connecticut seniors. And, in today’s COVID-19 environment – knowing how the virus can easily spread throughout a nursing home and to its vulnerable population – staying at home is a preferable option for many.

But if you’re like so many Connecticut residents, you may not know that there is Medicaid coverage for receiving care at home – that Medicaid benefits are not just for nursing home residents. This is great news!

AdobeStock_141959265-300x200There are few planning tasks more daunting than applying for Medicaid. The process is intimidating and can quickly become overwhelming, not merely because it’s complicated but also because it opens up a Pandora’s Box of legally nuanced questions and concerns.

This is not a task anyone can afford to botch, and it’s something that you have to get right on the first try.

Because of the challenges, most people seek help navigating the Medicaid labyrinth. While there are many reputable Connecticut elder law attorneys who assist with Medicaid applications and asset protection planning, there is also a dangerous new breed of “senior planning” providers that is preying on elderly nursing home residents, often reducing them to financial ruin. 

Grunge Stempel rot PREPAIDYou have probably heard the phrase “spend down” – something you could do to reduce your assets which would help to qualify you for Medicaid.

A prepaid funeral contract is one of those items that are considered exempt. In other words, its value won’t be counted when the Department of Social Services is reviewing your total assets.

The standard amount allowed by the the state of Connecticut for a prepaid irrevocable funeral service contract is $10,000.

AdobeStock_47549916-193x300By Lynda Lee Arnold

Are you thinking of moving close to your child’s home? Close…as in an in-law apartment or addition?

Many people in their later years decide to downsize and give money to an adult child for building an addition onto the child’s home.

Complex formula

By Kathleen Michalak

“Live long and prosper” is a blessing made famous by the TV series Star Trek.

But living a long life can be a mixed blessing, when care needs increase, and finances decrease.

When assets are depleted, Medicaid is a safety net you want to look into. It often covers the cost of long-term care either in nursing homes or in the community. Continue reading

AdobeStock_158377229-300x200No one looks forward to applying for Medicaid. It’s a complex and grueling process, the rules are always changing, and there are so many things that can go wrong.

Unfortunately, as is often the case, there are companies that are only too willing to take advantage of this situation. These companies claim to be able to process your Medicaid application at a low cost.  But these non-attorneys may cause their customers great harm – putting Medicaid applicants at risk for a number of serious issues including denial of eligibility, severe tax liability, loss of spousal assets and other situations that may threaten the client’s life savings and other assets.

Often it is the nursing home that refers Medicaid applicants to these companies, so there is the very real possibility of a conflict of interest.

AdobeStock_37660525-300x269Last month the Connecticut Supreme Court handed down a favorable decision in a case argued by attorney Carmine Perri of Czepiga Daly Pope & Perri.

Why this matters

For married couples who intend to apply for Medicaid for one of the spouses, it is now possible to protect as much of the ill spouse’s income as is necessary for the healthy spouse to remain safely in the community , even if it exceeds the Medicaid cap.

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