A Medicaid planning attorney at Biddinger, Bitzer & Estelle can help you to make a plan to get covered by Medicaid. Many people do not fully understand what Medicaid does or why it is so important to be able to qualify for Medicaid coverage under certain circumstances.
Unfortunately, not understanding this government program and not making plans to take advantage of it could end up costing you your life savings. Don’t let this happen to you. These five key reasons show why Medicaid planning is so important and is something that almost everyone should do.
1. Medicaid Covers Care That Medicare Doesn’t Cover
One of the most important reasons to make a Medicaid plan is because you may need to qualify for Medicaid to pay for things that Medicare doesn’t cover, that Medicare Advantage policies don’t cover, and that private health insurance providers do not cover.
Many seniors are surprised to find Medicare can have high premiums and high co-insurance costs. Many are also surprised to discover Medicare won’t pay for routine nursing home care. Unless you can qualify for Medicaid to pay for these kinds of costs that Medicare and private insurers won’t pay for, you may have no other source other than your own bank account to pay the bills.
2. Care Costs Can be Extremely Expensive If You Can’t Qualify for Medicaid
If you do not qualify for Medicaid to pay for nursing home care and other costs that Medicaid covers but Medicare doesn’t, you could end up spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on your healthcare needs. You don’t want to end up with your entire life savings being used to pay for a few months of nursing home care because no insurance (including Medicare) will pay for it for you.
Your wealth you have acquired should be passed down to your kids or used to support charitable causes that matter to you or given to other people you love. You don’t want to see everything gone due to nursing home bills in a matter of months. You can make sure this does not happen by making a Medicaid plan in advance with legal help.
3. Medicaid Planning Must Be Completed Early to Maximize Asset Protection
Medicaid has a “five-year” lookback rule, which imposes a disqualification period if you have transfers of assets within five years before applying for coverage. While there are still possible techniques to use to protect some wealth if you need to qualify for Medicaid coverage very soon, it is best to act long before you need Medicaid so a Medicaid planning attorney can help protect the maximum value of assets.
4. Medicaid Planning Can Help You Avoid Medicaid Estate Recovery
If Medicaid pays for certain kinds of care, such as nursing home care, the state of Michigan will sometimes engage in estate recovery. This involves making claims against your estate after you pass away. The state acts just like a creditor would, claiming it is entitled to some of your money or the proceeds of the sale of some of your properties in order to be repaid for medical expenditures. If you make a Medicaid plan, you can avoid this in most cases since you should have few or no assets transferring through probate.
5. Medicaid Planning Could be Vital for Parents of Disabled Children
Many arguments for making a Medicaid plan focus on how you can keep your life savings secure if you must go into a nursing home. However, there are also other situations where it’s important to make a plan to ensure Medicaid coverage is available. If you have a disabled child (or other loved one with a disability) and want to provide money or assets to the child, you could cause a loss of access to Medicaid benefits that the disabled person may be counting on.
If you give a inheritance or gift and don’t structure it properly, this could result in the recipient having too many resources and losing access to Medicaid (or being unable to get access when necessary). A special needs trust can ensure this does not happen, but you’ll need to work with a Medicaid planning lawyer to create a trust.
Getting Help from a Medicaid Planning Attorney
Now that you know why Medicaid planning is so important, it is time to take action. Biddinger, Bitzer & Estelle, PLLC will help you to ensure you can get covered by Medicaid when you need it. To find out more about how Medicaid planning works, join us for a free estate planning seminar. You can also call us today at (989) 872-5601 or contact us online for personalized information on how we can help you.