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  1. #1

    Default Marital Assets, Separate Assets, and Medicaid Eligibility for Nursing Home Care

    My question involves a person located in the state of: Indiana

    My sister's doctor told her that because of her health and disabilities she needs to be placed in a nursing home. She is 70 and currently living at home with her 69 year old husband who is her primary caregiver. Her husband says he can no longer care for her and will not let any home health in their home to help her. Frankly, we think that he just wants her gone.

    They own a house worth approximately $200,000 that is in both of their names with no mortgage. She receives approximately $1200 in SS a month. No one knows how much he receives in SS, pensions (at least 2, one from National Guard), 401(K), etc. He has never shared this information with her. They have separate banking accounts and always have. He is very tight with his money and she has to pay for anything she wants or needs, including groceries from her SS. He has 5 vehicles, all in his name alone (64 GTO, extended cab truck, 2 Cadillacs and a Corvette).

    He is trying to get Medicaid to pay for her nursing home payments. He thinks that he can claim that because nothing but the house is in a joint name, he can do this. 3 of us sisters also own 1/3 interest each in a separate house (appraised at $80,000) that was our parents.

    Should we do anything with the house we jointly own? She thinks that if he can not get her into a nursing home without paying anything out of his pocket, he will divorce her and take everything. Or will transfer all his assets to a brother or son. Can he do any of this?

    We think he may he senile or if not senile, nuts over spending any money on anyone except himself. Any suggestions?

    Thanks.

    Also, we have a joint checking account that we all deposit money into for the shared home (3 sisters). Her name is on the checking account along with the other 2. Should that be changed?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Marital Assets, Separate Assets, and Medicaid Eligibility for Nursing Home Care

    Quote Quoting inmom
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    Her husband says he can no longer care for her and will not let any home health in their home to help her. Frankly, we think that he just wants her gone.
    Caring for an elderly person in declining health can be a great deal of work. Is anybody else in the family going to step up and provide care? If not, should we say that they just want her gone, as well?
    Quote Quoting inmom
    He is trying to get Medicaid to pay for her nursing home payments. He thinks that he can claim that because nothing but the house is in a joint name, he can do this.
    Medicaid will not kick you out of your home before you qualify for benefits; they'll impose a lien. But for other assets, spend-down requirements may apply.
    Quote Quoting inmom
    3 of us sisters also own 1/3 interest each in a separate house (appraised at $80,000) that was our parents.
    Her interest in the second home is likely subject to spend-down requirements.
    Quote Quoting inmom
    Also, we have a joint checking account that we all deposit money into for the shared home (3 sisters). Her name is on the checking account along with the other 2. Should that be changed?
    Changing it right before she seeks Medicaid is not going to be of much use, but you should definitely consider a different approach going forward.
    Quote Quoting inmom
    She thinks that if he can not get her into a nursing home without paying anything out of his pocket, he will divorce her and take everything. Or will transfer all his assets to a brother or son. Can he do any of this?
    Medicaid will see through any fraudulent transfers of the marital estate. A divorce could worsen his position by resulting in the liquidation of exempt assets or the requirement that he pay spousal support.
    Quote Quoting inmom
    We think he may he senile or if not senile, nuts over spending any money on anyone except himself.
    Being greedy is not of itself evidence of senility.
    Quote Quoting inmom
    Any suggestions?
    Help your sister consult with a lawyer who handles estate and Medicaid planning matters, better still if that lawyer is part of a family law practice that can also advise her about her rights in the event of separation or divorce (if she's interested in exploring those possibilities).

  3. #3

    Default Re: Marital Assets, Separate Assets, and Medicaid Eligibility for Nursing Home Care

    Sister lives out of state from me. Husband will not let anyone else in to help. I think he has some issues too. We have tried to get home health in but he will not let them in. One of her doctor's kicked him out of his office because of the way he was acting about getting anyone or anything in to help her.

    What suggestions on going forward to change parents' home and joint checking account? We don't want to take her off of the deed, or do we? Would we be in a position to lose the house if we don't? We can take her off of the checking account if that is a good move. Thanks.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Marital Assets, Separate Assets, and Medicaid Eligibility for Nursing Home Care

    Lawyer told husband he could keep up to $100,000 in automobiles and wife could still be on Medicaid. Anyone hear of this? She also owns interest in 2 homes.

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