Published on:

The Governor recently signed California Senate bill 483 which will bring some major changes to the Medi-Cal Long Term Care program. This bill was designed to put California in conformance with the Federal Deficit Reduction Act of 2005 which requires states to place limitations on Medi-Cal eligibility or risk loss of federal funding. The bill will go into effect January 1, 2009 and will have an impact on hundreds of thousands of seniors and individuals with disabilities or mental health issues.

The bill will change the look back period in California from 30 months to 60 months and makes the penalty period start when an applicant is in a nursing home and applies for benefits. (The look back period is the time within which Medi-Cal can review transfers of assets.)

The bill also limits the equity in the exempt home to $750,000 and defines “equity interest” as the assessed value or appraised value, whichever is lower, minus encumbrances. The home equity limits do not apply however in certain circumstances.

Published on:

New facilities are springing up all over the county for seniors in such areas as Escondido, Encinitas, San Marcos, and Vista. Some facilities have a resort type atmosphere and some even specialize in dementia and Alzheimer care. You can obtain a directory of senior facilities for assisted living, independent, and convalescent care from Alternatives for Seniors.

Moving a loved one to an assisted living, nursing home or convalescent home is not an easy decision. Particularly troublesome is how to pay for such care when one spouse needs to be cared for in a facility and the other wants to remain at home. Such specialized care can be expensive and impossible for many people to pay for out of pocket. It is estimated that long term care can cost $40,000 – $60,000 per year in some areas. Medicare typically will not pay for long term care. Some people have policies of long term health care which may partially cover such costs but if the insurance was not purchased when the individual was healthy, it is not going to be possible to obtain insurance once it seems evident that long term care will be necessary.

Medi-Cal is the California Medicaid system for people 65 or older with limited income and financial resources. Medi-Cal may pay for long term care however its rules and regulations are constantly changing and often confusing for the average person. At Law Office of Scott C. Soady, A Professional Corporation we can help you with Medi-Cal planning, which is the process of qualifying for benefits while still protecting assets that have taken you a lifetime to accumulate. Call or e mail us to set up a complimentary consultation.

Published on:

In San Diego and elsewhere, more and more Americans are suffering from Alzheimer’s, dementia, or other diseases that cause them to become unable to take care of themselves. It is estimated that 1 in 7 Americans over the age of 70 suffer from some sort of dementia.

We are all living longer and as the elderly population grows in the United States, the incidence of dementia and Alzheimers will be increasing. By the year 2050, it is estimated that between 11 and 16 million Americans will have Alzheimer’s disease. Planning for the future needs of such people becomes increasingly important.

When your loved one has been diagnosed with dementia or Alzheimers, family members need to plan for the future. If the disease is still in its early stages, the individual may still have the mental capacity to execute documents such as a Durable Power of Attorney for Finances and an Advance Health Care Directive. If the individual already has a will or trust, these may need to be amended. In addition, long term strategies may have to be considered for such things as in-home care, assisted living, or nursing home placement.

Published on:

In San Diego, many residents need skilled nursing home care. At our law firm of Law Office of Scott C. Soady, A Professional Corporation, LLP, we are pleased to offer a complimentary and confidential consultation for you or a loved one who needs skilled nursing care or long term care planning.

The Medicare website has many useful articles. One article on on paying for skilled nursing care. The costs are thousands of dollars per month and can strain even the most financially stable families. The laws of the State of California are very complicated as is the applicaition process. Please feel free to e mail our law firm if you need additional information.

Published on:

In San Diego, there are many residents who need long term care planning. These include San Diego residents who are both old and young. It is important to begin the planning as soon as possible since there are many options. Our law firm of Law Office of Scott C. Soady, A Professional Corporation, LLP can assist with advising you of the law regarding long term care planning and assisting your family in this difficult time. Please feel free to e mail or call our office for a complimentary and confidential consulation.

The San Diego Union Tribune has an article which discusses long term care insurance. This can be part of an estate plan. Be sure, as in the article, to use a licensed and reputable agent. You can check on the California Department of Insurance website for credentials and current license status.

Target also has advice for long term care planning. This site has useful information and also discusses an advanced health care directive. This is essential in any estate plan.

Published on:

In Kearny Mesa, there are many residents receiving government benefits. Our law firm of Law Office of Scott C. Soady, A Professional Corporation, LLP can assist with your long term care planning. Please feel free to e mail or call us to arrange a complimentary and confidential consultation. The below is not a case involving a Kearny Mesa resident however the application of the law would be the same regarding the “look back” period. All cases are unique and we urge you to consult with a licensed attorney by the State Bar of California.

An applicant for Medicaid may have eligibility for benefits delayed if he or she has recently transferred real property to an individual for less than the fair market value of the property. A penalty period is imposed if the transfer took place during a span of time known as the “look-back” period. This provision is meant to prevent duplicitous gaming of the Medicaid system, but, as a court recently noted, the provision does not justify viewing every property transfer with skepticism and disapproval merely because it precedes Medicaid eligibility.

In the case before the court, a 67-year-old who suffered from Alzheimer’s disease and other ailments applied for Medicaid assistance. The state agency that oversaw Medicaid rejected the application on the ground that the applicant had transferred real property for less than its value within the look-back period. The applicant, in fact, had conveyed the home where she lived to her three children as a gift, and the deed to the property was recorded shortly before she applied for Medicaid.

Published on:

In California, nursing homes can wipe out a family financially and even one that is well off. Our law firm of Law Office of Scott C. Soady, A Professional Corporation, LLP have assisted our client’s in long term care planning. This is a complex and complicated are of the law. Please feel free to e mail or call us for a complimentary and confidential consultation.

MediCal is California’s Medicaid. This is a governmental program that provides health insurance coverage for low-income children, seniors, and people with disabilities. As the baby boomers age, Medicaid’s other role, as a source of nursing home benefits, is getting more attention. Each of the states operates its own Medicaid program, subject to some overriding rules set up by Congress and the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. The following is an overview of some of those rules. Be aware that the specific requirements can vary from state to state, and must be checked before making decisions.

An individual may have no more than $2,000 in “countable” assets to be eligible for Medicaid nursing home benefits. Assets that are not counted in this calculation include personal possessions, one motor vehicle (valued up to $4,500 for an unmarried recipient and of any value for the resident’s spouse), a principal residence in the same state where benefits are sought, prepaid funeral plans and a small amount of life insurance, and assets deemed to be inaccessible. To promote the independence of the nursing home resident’s healthy spouse, usually referred to as the “community” spouse, that spouse may keep one-half of the couple’s countable assets, up to a maximum of $92,760 in 2004. The least that a state may allow the community spouse to retain in 2004 is $18,552. The couple’s assets are totaled as of a “snapshot date,” which is when a spouse enters a long-term facility in which he or she then stays for at least 30 days.

Contact Information