Articles Posted in Long-term Care Planning

Worried womanIf you want Medicaid in Connecticut to pay for your long-term care, one thing you should NOT do is give away your assets – unless you think you won’t need Medicaid within the next five years.

When you apply for Medicaid for long-term care in either a nursing facility or in your home, you are required to provide financial records for the past five years. This is called the “look back” period. Continue reading

Safe and moneyBy Lara Schneider-Bomzer

Purchasing annuities is a good way for married couples to protect assets, but doing it wrong could mean huge penalties. Here is what you need to know about annuities as it relates to Medicaid planning in Connecticut:

If your spouse is residing in a nursing home or is in need of home care, chances are you’ve read our blogs about the ways to protect your assets and qualify your spouse for Medicaid benefits. But not all strategies apply to all couples.

Just as a refresher, under the Medicaid rules, the Institutionalized Spouse (IS) may only have a maximum of $1,600 in assets in his name.  The Community Spouse (CS) may have a house, a car and up to half of a maximum of $130,380, called the Community Spouse Protected Amount (CSPA).  While there are income requirements for the IS, the CS may have as much income as she receives with no limit.

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men-sticking-tongues-at-each-other-300x211Sibling relationships can be fraught even in the best of times. Under the stress and strain of dealing with the needs of aging parents, they can deteriorate swiftly and dramatically. It’s a common issue faced by families from all walks of life. But it can be easier to manage if you know that to expect.

It’s important to make the distinction between knowing what to expect and having expectations.

Most people, if they are honest, have an idea of how they’d like their sibling group to handle the various financial, emotional, and day-to-day needs as parents get older. But reality doesn’t always line up with those expectations. With the added pressure and anxiety of having to make important decisions and sacrifices, adult siblings often fall into old childhood patterns, triggering each other in unhealthy ways. Emotions run high. The concept of what’s “fair” gets distorted.

dollars-1412644-mThe Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) disability programs are the largest of several Federal programs that provide assistance to people with disabilities. While these two programs are different in many ways, both are administered by the Social Security Administration and only individuals who have a disability and meet medical criteria may qualify for benefits under either program.

SSDI pays benefits to you and certain members of your family if you are “insured,” meaning Continue reading

Helpful tipsFew of us want to face up to the struggles advanced age can bring, much less plan for them. But since it’s a good bet that you’ll live longer than previous generations in your family, you have to ask yourself this question:

Will I be able to afford those extra years without demolishing my lifetime of saving when I need long-term care?

This is an important question since the cost of long term care is a financial threat that can wipe you out in no time…especially in Connecticut.

So what do you do? Continue reading

By Carmine Perri

iStock_000016746886SmallImagine yourself in this situation: As a favor, you agree to help your spouse’s parent get settled into a nursing home.

If you’re like most people, you’d be emotionally stressed and feeling a bit guilty. Not exactly the best mindset for absorbing complex information nor for making legally-binding decisions.

But that’s exactly what some nursing home admission coordinators encourage people to do when they ask them to sign an admissions agreement while they’re at the nursing home for the first time.

This often ends up being a painful mistake. If you don’t completely understand Continue reading

iStock_000007924623SmallYou did well financially, and when the time came to move to assisted living you never considered the possibility that you might run out of money.

But you didn’t expect to live this long! And now that you need more help, it’s even more expensive to live.

What do you do?

The State of Connecticut created the Private Assisted Living Pilot Program – available for up to 125 qualifying individuals in Connecticut who have spent down their assets as a result of living in private assisted living facilities. Continue reading

iStock_000018435449SmallIndependent Living. Assisted Living. Nursing Home. What do these terms mean? How are they different from each other? And which one is right for you? Take a look here to learn what each one is all about.

Independent Living

Maybe you’re starting to think that a little more help would make life easier. You’re still living in the two-story house you raised your kids in. Maybe your spouse is gone, or maybe not, living is just getting to be too much.

Your daughter wonders aloud if you’d be happier in a retirement community where everything is Continue reading

iStock_000019669901SmallAssets count when it comes to qualifying for Medicaid as we discussed in another post, “How to Qualify for Medicaid Benefits by Planning Now.” However, some assets related to your funeral expenses are excluded, and prepaying them is an acceptable way to spend down your assets to qualify for Medicaid, or Title XIX.

Here’s what the State of Connecticut allows:

Irrevocable Funeral Trust or Contract

You can prepay up to $10,000 for an irrevocable funeral trust, also called an irrevocable funeral contract. This covers basic service charges, funeral services, preparation of remains, vehicles, etc. Keep in mind that this type of contract cannot be canceled or cashed in. It can only be transferred to another licensed funeral home. Continue reading

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.

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