In 2005, eligibility requirements for Medicaid were changed for couples in which one spouse required a nursing home. Basically, the law is focused on avoiding impoverishment for both spouses when only one of them needs to qualify for Medicaid assistance.
Exempt assets are usually considered the home, household and personal belongings, one vehicle, burial plots and irrevocable funeral plans, cash value of life insurance (up to $1,500), and a certain amount of cash.
The non-exempt are added up and the spouse in the community can keep approximately $113,000.
Florida also sets a monthly minimum level for the healthy spouse, called the Minimum Monthly Maintenance Needs Allowance (MMMNA). This allows a minimum monthly income varying from about $1,750 to $2,650.
If the healthy (“community”) spouse doesn’t earn at least $1,750, he/she is allowed to take enough income from the nursing home spouse to at least reach the minimum levels stipulated by the MMMNA. This helps the healthy spouse to avoid having to use up their savings.
Confusing? You bet! And that’s not even the half of it! You pretty much need to be an Elder Law attorney to understand all the rules and regulations. And that’s where we come in.
At The Law Offices of Alice Reiter Feld & Associates, we are Elder Law attorneys. That’s all we do. We’ve been working with South Florida families on issues such as these – along with estate planning, wills, trusts, powers of attorney, asset preservation, long-term care planning, Medicaid and VA issues – for 33 years. And we’ve helped thousands of them make the decisions that are best for their loved ones, and best for their families.
This process doesn’t have to be overwhelming, if you have a partner that knows the ropes. We know the ropes. And we’re just a phone call away.
My Father’s Applying For Medicaid To Pay For A Nursing Home