If you are up on the state of affairs with regard to long-term care expenses, you may be surprised to hear that you could be faced with a stifling series of bills during the latter stages of your life. The costs associated with assisted living have become exorbitant, and if you combine the average length of stay with the average expenses involved you may be looking at an expense that exceeds $200,000.
Medicare does not pay for long-term care, and you must consider this to budget intelligently. Fortunately, Medicaid will pay for long-term care, but there are strict eligibility requirements. There is an upper resource limit of $2,000 (for a single individual in Kentucky), but before you assume that you can’t qualify you should be aware that many of your most valuable assets may not count toward this figure, including your house and your vehicle.
In addition, let’s say that you are married and need long-term care but your spouse does not. The healthy spouse may keep half of the community assets up to a prescribed limit. This limit has been raised in 2012 to $113,640; in 2011 it was $109,560.
The rules and regulations surrounding the Medicaid program are somewhat complex and it takes particular knowledge to craft a plan that allows for the protection of assets while still obtaining Medicaid eligibility. The guidance of an experienced professional is key, and the wise first step is to sit down and discuss your unique situation with a licensed Northern Kentucky or Eastern Kentucky Elder Law attorney.
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