Medicaid is a federally funded health care program for the less fortunate. Although the federal government funds Medicaid, it is run by the state in which you live in. Each state has different rules when it comes to qualifying for Medicaid.
Medicaid has several programs under its umbrella. One of its most used programs is the Institutional Care Program (ICP). ICP pays for nursing home care. To qualify for the ICP program in Florida, the person applying for Medicaid must (i) be at least 65 years of age or disabled; (ii) be a U.S. Citizen; (iii) be a Florida resident; (iv) have a social security number; (v) file for all other benefits available to the applicant; (vi) notify the State of Florida of any health insurance; (vii) be determined to be in need of a nursing home; and (viii) be placed in a nursing home that accepts Medicaid participants. To be determined to be in need of a nursing home, you must not be able to perform 3 of the following 5 activities as determined by a physician: (i) walking and standing; (ii) dressing yourself; (iii) feeding yourself; (iv) bathing yourself; and (v) going to the bathroom on your own.
Further, you must also pass the income and asset tests to qualify for Florida’s ICP program. Currently, the person who is applying for Medicaid must have less than $2,000 in countable assets. It is important that the assets be countable as there are many types of assets, which are not countable assets. Loosely defined by the State of Florida, a countable asset is an asset that is liquid. If you have a spouse who is not applying for Medicaid, they may generally keep $113,640 in countable assets.
To pass the income test, the applicant must have less than $2,094. Even a penny over that amount will disqualify the applicant for Medicaid in Florida. If your spouse is not applying for Medicaid, they may have as much income as they want and also take an additional amount of the applicant’s income depending upon a formula. However, that additional amount may not be greater than $2,841. If the applicant’s income is greater than $2,094, then there are ways of diverting the overage into a trust so that the applicant can pass the income test.
If you are a concerned relative or friend of an elderly person that seeks counsel concerning Estate Planning, Elder Law or Medicaid and whether or not they would qualify for Medicaid, Contact Us Online or Call Us at (904) 355-8888 to set up a consultation.Medicaid – Frequently Asked Questions
Below are some of the most common questions we receive from the clients and family members when it comes to Medicaid Planning:
- What is elder law?
- What information is needed when applying for Medicaid in Florida?
- What is a Qualified Income Trust?
- What is the penalty divisor?
- What are some considerations when purchasing long-term care insurance?
- How does the Deficit Reduction Act affect Florida’s Medicaid system?
- What are the criteria for applying for Medicaid in Florida?
- What makes an asset countable versus non-countable?
- What transfers are allowed when applying for Medicaid in Florida?
- How can I spend down my assets when applying for Medicaid?
- Example of a possible Medicaid scenario