skip to main content
skip to newscasts

Tuesday, February 27, 2024

Public News Service Logo
facebook instagram linkedin reddit youtube twitter
view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

ND makes the grade in a national report evaluating public school support; SCOTUS justices express free speech concerns about GOP-backed social media laws; NH "kids on campus" program boosts retention; proposed law bans hemp sales to Hoosiers younger than 21.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

The Supreme Court hears arguments on whether social media can restrict content. Biden advisors point to anti-democracy speeches at CPAC, and the President heads to the US-Mexico border appealing to voters on immigration and border issues.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

David meets Goliath in Idaho pesticide conflict, to win over Gen Z voters, candidates are encouraged to support renewable energy and rural America needs help from Congress to continue affordable internet programs.

'Spousal Impoverishment' Preserves Assets from Medicaid Recovery

play audio
Play

Monday, March 13, 2023   

Seventy percent of those who reach age 65 will need long-term care services or expensive in-home nursing care, and 42% of it nationwide is paid for by Medicaid.

With long-term care costing nearly $100,000 a year in Nebraska as of 2022, assets can quickly be wiped out.

Ann Mangiameli, an attorney in Omaha, said states are required to "recover" funds Medicaid spends on in-home or out-of-home nursing care for those 55 and older, but the Spousal Impoverishment program allows the healthy spouse to preserve a portion of their assets. It includes their house, if the spouse continues to live there.

She pointed out if one member of a couple may need nursing home care, they should request a "Spousal Impoverishment" assessment through the Department of Health and Human Services, which involves dividing their total assets in half.

"And then they look at the half of the assets that goes to the spouse that's going to be considered the one needing the nursing care," Mangiameli explained. "That person needs to spend their assets down to $4,000 in Nebraska to qualify for Medicaid."

Mangiameli noted the house is not considered when totaling the couple's assets. She said once the spouse needing care qualifies for Medicaid, the house should be transferred to the name of the spouse living there, referred to as the "community spouse." If it is not done, and the community spouse dies first, the house becomes eligible for Medicaid recovery since it is considered an asset of the spouse who's receiving Medicaid.

As of 2022, the "community spouse" can keep a maximum of roughly $137,000 and a minimum of roughly $27,000. They can also keep their income up to just over $3,400 a month, with amounts adjusted annually based on inflation.

Mangiameli emphasized by delaying the Medicaid assessment until the couples' assets have further dwindled, the community spouse may qualify to keep a lower amount. She also cautioned seniors assets given away within five years of applying for Medicaid -- the current "look-back" period -- will be considered when determining total assets. Although it will not permanently disqualify a person from Medicaid, it will result in a "penalty period."

"So, let's say you gave away $100,000, and the nursing home that you're going into is $10,000, you are ineligible for a period of 10 months," Mangiameli outlined. "It's the actual cost of the facility up to whatever that amount of money is."

Mangiameli added since 2017, the state law said all assets, with or without a probated will, and including those in a trust, may be eligible for Medicaid recovery.

Nebraska's Spousal Impoverishment Program and Medicaid Recovery both include a number of exceptions and special considerations, so Mangiameli urged seniors to consult with an elder law attorney and not delay seeking a Spousal Impoverishment assessment if they anticipate needing Medicaid in the future.

"People need to know that Medicaid Recovery is a thing; that they will get letters," Mangiameli stressed. "Nebraska is required to try to get paid back for any Medicaid payments, specifically once they are in nursing homes. And families usually don't know that until they get those letters in the mail."


get more stories like this via email

more stories
A new report shows that people who complete Prop 47-funded programs like those offered at Safe Harbor Recovery Center in Los Angeles are much less likely to be reincarcerated. (Safe Harbor)

Social Issues

play sound

Programs intended to reduce the chances that someone will end up back behind bars are working, according to a new analysis of California state data…


Social Issues

play sound

Arizona is gearing up for its presidential preference election that takes place in less than a month, and registered Democrats and Republicans were …

play sound

You might say "every day is 'bring your child to college day'" at New Hampshire's Manchester Community College. On-campus childcare programs are …


Social Issues

play sound

The number of Black mothers in Ohio who die during or following pregnancy continues to climb and health advocates said they hope to shine a light on t…

Legislative supporters say had South Dakota taken part in a new federally funded summer meal program for low-income families, an estimated 54,000 children around the state would have benefited. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

play sound

It's been an uphill battle for childhood nutrition advocates to advance meal access policies in the South Dakota Legislature. However, organizers say …

Environment

play sound

A cooperative effort has seeded more than 26,000 acres in eastern Nevada. It's all in an effort to increase desirable grasses, forbs and shrubs while …

Social Issues

play sound

Texas postal customers, especially in rural areas, are experiencing delays in mail delivery, and some letter carriers feel it could get worse…

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021