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Long-term care, including in-home nursing care, is extraordinarily expensive. The national average cost for a home health aide is $20.50 an hour. At just eight hours a day, five days a week with a two-week vacation, that totals over $41,000 per year. Medicaid will pay for the cost of a nursing home or the cost of in-home nursing care, but there are strict requirements concerning eligibility. Applicants who earn too much of a regular income, or who have too much net worth, are not eligible for Medicaid. If you own your home, does that mean you will be disqualified from Medicaid in Florida? Read on to learn about how your house affects your Medicaid eligibility, and call an effective West Palm Beach Medicaid planning and elder law attorney for assistance.
According to the current Medicaid rules, a single applicant who is 65 years or older can possess up to $2,000 in cash, stocks, bonds, and other liquid assets while still maintaining eligibility for home-based nursing care. They may also earn up to $2,349/month in income. The income and asset limits are greater for married couples applying together.
Although any house would clearly exceed the asset limit for Medicaid eligibility, the government makes an exception for individuals and couples who live in a home that they own. So long as you live in your home and your equity value in your home is under a certain limit, Medicaid will not count your home toward the asset limit. This also means that Medicaid will not take your home to pay for Medicaid nursing services.
If an applicant lives in Florida in 2020, they can keep their home so long as their equity in the home is no greater than $595,000. Equity over that amount may affect an applicant’s eligibility for Medicaid. However, if the applicant has a non-applicant spouse who lives in the home, then the home will be exempt from Medicaid calculations regardless of where the applicant lives or the amount of their equity in the home.
You may be able to protect up to all of your other assets – not just the home – with proper planning.
A skilled West Palm Beach Medicaid planning attorney can help you and your family plan appropriately to maximize your chances to qualify for Medicaid and other needs-based governmental programs. If you are in need of a compassionate and effective Florida Medicaid planning and elder law attorney, contact the seasoned and detail-oriented West Palm Beach trust and estates attorneys of Shalloway & Shalloway at 561-686-6200.