Listen to Lawrence…Answering Client questions and update on Community Medicaid

October 22, 2020
Dear clients and friends,
I have several questions and answers today, plus other news. Here we go…
My mom passed away in a nursing home; she was on Medicaid. Can Medicaid go after her estate now that she is gone?
YES! Medicaid can seek reimbursement from mom’s estate. This includes the small account she may have had at the nursing home and an exempt amount she may have had in her checking account. However, if the accounts have a beneficiary and pass automatically at the time of death, there will be no estate to go after. They generally limit reimbursement to the probate estate, so just avoid probate on everything!
What is the difference between an investment account and a retirement account?
A retirement account is one type of investment account. A retirement account includes IRAs, 401Ks, 403Bs, and all other accounts that you have not paid taxes on yet, but must take out the required minimum distributions at the age of 72. I may sometimes refer to a non-retirement account as a simple investment account, but these are just labels we can use at the moment. It is important to distinguish between retirement and non-retirement accounts as they will often have different tax and Medicaid consequences.
I am concerned about deed theft. When I receive my tax bill each year, is that enough evidence to confirm that the deed is still in my name?
Yes, as to a certain date.  Each town has a tax day in which they determine homeownership, usually around June 1st, but the date can vary.  The owner will then get billed on December 1st for the first half taxes. So when you get your bill in December, you can be assured that you were still the registered owner the prior June, or thereabouts.
In my last email, I reported to you that Medicaid does not appear to be implementing the new look-back and transfer penalties for Community Medicaid until 4/1/21.  Thereafter, we heard the date may be 1/1/21.  The bottom line is that nothing is for sure yet, but if you need home care assistance from Medicaid, don’t wait! You will have a better chance of saving everything if you apply before 1/1/21 or sooner. I will keep you updated…..because I live for this stuff…lol.
I hope this helps! Please forward this information to your friends and relatives.
As always, please send me your questions. If you are thinking about it, others are probably too, so my answers will no doubt help you and many others.
Let’s stay connected.
Stay safe!