If there is a chance that you could need end-of-life or long-term care, Medicaid planning should be at the top of your to-do list. To be most effective, you should put Medicaid planning, including an appropriate trust, into motion at least five years before you will need to live in a nursing home. However, even at the last minute, so-called “crisis” Medicaid planning can help shelter at least part of the individual’s assets from being lost to the expense of nursing home care.
Unfortunately, too many people are not able to qualify for Medicaid to assist in paying for resident nursing facilities due to the assets in their possession. The gap between the assets you can possess and the cost of such nursing homes is too large to be overcome without appropriate planning.
What is a Medicaid Planning Trust?
A Medicaid Planning Trust is an irrevocable trust that changes ownership of assets from you to the trust itself, which then passes on to a beneficiary upon your death. Because the trust cannot be changed, altered, or abolished in any way once formed, Medicaid planning trusts are not included in asset calculations for Medicaid qualification in New Mexico.
It is important to understand that there are other types of irrevocable trusts that can be excluded from Medicaid asset calculations, and a Medicaid planning trust may not be right for you. However, revocable living trusts and some trusts termed “irrevocable” are considered as assets by Medicaid regardless. Our experienced estate attorneys can help you make the right choice for your unique circumstances.
Like other states, New Mexico has an asset limit of $2,000 for an individual to qualify for Medicaid, making these trusts invaluable to the families left behind. There are also monthly income limits, but they are complicated and dependent on several factors. Our New Mexico Medicaid planning attorneys can help you determine what you need to do to qualify.
Medicaid Planning Protects Your Assets for Your Family
Not only does a Medicaid planning trust help you become eligible for the financial assistance you need to maintain life in a nursing home, it also protects those assets for your family’s future. The beneficiary of the trust must be someone other than the person who establishes the trust for the assets to be excluded in Medicaid eligibility calculations.
But you can name anyone you like as the beneficiary, including your children and grandchildren. The trustee must not be able to have access to any of the funds themselves, and you should designate someone you can trust to carry out your wishes appropriately. This means that, although the assets are tied up until your passing, your beneficiaries will receive the funds instead of the state or the nursing home.
New Mexico Estate Attorneys for Medicaid Planning
In addition to Medicaid planning, there are other issues that you should be prepared for as you get closer to needing long-term nursing care. Medicaid planning in general is something that most people don’t think about until they need it, and that is a mistake. Take action now so that you know you are prepared when the time comes. Contact our experienced estate attorneys for assistance in these and other financial goals for your family’s future.