After 50+ years of an unpleasant marriage, my parents have separated (i.e., living apart, but with no legal action (yet)). My mother (early 70's) lives in an assisted living facility in Wyoming, and my father (early 80's) has moved (temporarily) into my home in Washington. They have moderate income (his state retirement + SS for both). They also own their home (now vacant) and some CD's.
We've been looking at senior apartments for my father. Because nearly half of his income goes to pay for my mother's assisted living facility cost, his available income is low, and in fact, is well below the limit for low-income housing. Unfortunately, all of the subsidized housing we've looked at makes no allowance for my mother's housing expenses, and considers his full income in their calculation, placing him above the eligibility threshold.
So here's the question: are there any legal options available which would enable him to exclude my mother's housing expenses from his income? Divorce is a possibility, but my assumption is that the divorce decree would essentially require him to pay maintenance for my mother, which is what he's already doing, so wouldn't really change anything (since I don't see anything on the housing subsidy application that allows divorced spouse maintenance to be excluded from income either).