The number is only the beginning of the analysis…read on:
One question. How much money is the limit we can show without exceeding the five-year look back? Used to be $16,000. You did our trust in 2021.
As you all know, you have to be poor to be on Medicaid. It is a welfare program so this comes as no surprise. The numbers change each year with inflation and this year is no exception. What was surprising this year was how much it went up. Last year the number hovered around $16,000. This year the number has nearly doubled to $30,182.
The questioner transferred assets to a trust and waited out the five-year
look back. Now that the look back is over the assets in her trust are protected. However, the assets remaining in her name are not protected
if they exceed $30,182, subject to certain exceptions (like the principal amount in your retirement plans).
Should you be alarmed if you have non-exempt assets above the exempt amount? The answer is it DEPENDS. The real answer is that protecting assets for your children does not have to be the only goal. How about protecting assets for yourself? How about leaving a certain amount of money in your name to protect your dignity and independence? The reality is that you must balance protecting assets for your children and protecting assets for yourself. How you balance this will be different from client to client. We can help you work through this balancing act.
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