How Gifting Relates to Medicaid Planning
January 30th, 2018
As you age, it is not uncommon for you to want pass on wealth or assets to your loved ones during your lifetime as gifts. Whether a grandchild needs funds to attend college, or a child needs money for medical expenses, it sometimes makes more sense to dispose of assets while you are still alive, rather than waiting until after your death. When it comes time for you to need long-term care, however, Medicaid may be one of your only options. The problem is that Medicaid has strict asset and income eligibility requirements, and part of that eligibility means looking back at your history of gifting assets to others.
In order to determine your Medicaid eligibility, your state Medicaid agency will look back for the previous five years in order to determine if you gave away or gifted assets for less than fair market value, or no value at all. If the agency finds that you gave assets to others as gifts within the lookback period, then your Medicaid benefits may be denied or delayed, subject to a few narrow exceptions. This can be devastating if you are in immediate need of long-term care.
Undertaking comprehensive Medicaid planning well before you are in need of long-term care is the recommended course of action for avoiding a situation like that described above. Taking some basic steps to ensure or safeguard Medicaid eligibility is essential if you want to be able Medicaid long-term care benefits when you need them. Even if your need for long-term care arises earlier than you anticipated, we still can help you devise a strategy to maximize your Medicaid eligibility to the greatest degree possible.
The Ann Arbor long-term care lawyers of Legacy Law Center are experienced in ensuring that you have the comprehensive and up-to-date long-term care and estate plan in place that best will benefit you and your family. We are your trusted advisors who are skilled in looking at all facets of your life, evaluating your needs, and working collaboratively with you and your family to create a plan that meets all of your needs. Contact Legacy Law Center today and learn how we can help you make the right decisions for you and your family.