Long-term care planning with Medicaid

On Behalf of | Jan 30, 2021 | Protecting Assets |

Because generations are living longer and financial planning is speculative, arranging for the costly, long-term care is an unavoidable reality. Ultimately, most Massachusettsans will rely on Medicaid for nursing care. It is incumbent on the Medicaid recipient to understand the laws and legalities that govern MassHealth (Massachusetts Medicaid).

When will MassHealth cover long term care?

MassHealth will cover nursing home care when a skilled level of care is needed. Skilled care or services are administered by a nurse – injections, condition monitoring, or wound and/or catheter care. Skilled care can also include assistance with daily tasks such as bathing, dressing, mobility, etc.

Who is eligible for MassHealth?

Elderly residents aged 65 years or older must have financial resources that meet established thresholds. The financial thresholds are determined by state and federal government and are based on marital status, income and assets.

What options exist if income or assets are too high?

Elderly residents can establish a Medicaid trust which allows the long-term care recipient to place assets in an irrevocable trust. Placing the assets in the trust removes direct ownership, which disqualifies the assets from the qualification process. The assets are still available for the recipient to use, enjoy and gift after their passing. There is a five-year look-back period to ensure no assets from the trust were sold or given away below fair market value.

How is a Medicaid trust established?

Establishing a Medicaid Trust must be done several years in advance. The process is beneficial in protecting assets but must be done correctly to stay within the confines of the law. Contacting a trusted law firm for long-term care solutions is the best way to plan for the future.