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No one yearns to be on a program like Medicaid. Seniors engage in Medicaid planning mainly because they find themselves in a “lose-lose” corner.

First, they lose their health and require long-term care and come face-to-face with nursing home costs averaging $81,030 for a semi-private room and $90,520 for a private room per year.

Second, they learn that they will have to lose virtually their entire estate to pay for long-term care, paying 100% out-of-pocket until they reach Medicaid’s definition of impoverishment.

Congress created a partial remedy to this harsh result under Medicaid by exempting certain assets such as the home, allowing married couples to preserve a larger amount of their resources, and permitting a limited range of asset transfers without penalty.

Source: National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys

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