With people living a lot longer these days, the need for nursing homes is on the rise. As much as we wish we could take care of our loved ones ourselves, it’s not always an option. As our parents get older, they need more and more care. Most of us are not qualified or prepared to provide this care.
When you and your family discuss whether or not to put your loved one in a nursing home, there’s a lot to consider. Nursing homes are expensive. If you have Medicare, they’ll cover a very small portion of your stay. Medicaid will normally cover the rest, but not if you have assets. In order to qualify for Medicaid, you have to show that you’re indigent. If you own property, you’ll be expected to sell it to cover the costs of a nursing home.
We understand the rationale behind this. The government shouldn’t be expected to pay for your medical care if you have assets. This money is not going to be paid back. And the expenses of a long-term care facility are extremely high. Some nursing homes charges upwards of $8,000 per month.
A probate attorney in Houston can help you protect these assets. The last thing you want to do is work your whole life only to have your property taken away from you. You want your home to go to your family when you die. Your family can make the choice whether to sell it or share it. You don’t want it to be sold to pay for medical bills.
Are there Ways to Protect Your Home?
More than 70% of all Americans will eventually need some form of long-term care. Most people can’t afford to pay for it. Medicare won’t pay for most types of long-term care. Medicaid will only cover it if you have no assets.
This means, if you own your home, you may be forced to sell it to cover your medical care. Or, you’ll have to sign the deed over to the nursing home. Nobody wants to do this. That’s why a probate lawyer in Houston works with clients to protect their assets.
The important thing is that you take action sooner rather than later. If you learn that you need to enter a nursing home, you won’t have time to protect your assets. It’ll be too late. If a nursing home sees that you transferred a property within a few months of entering the facility, they’re going to challenge the transfer.
There are a few things you can do to protect your assets. You can purchase long-term care insurance. This is insurance that covers most of the costs of nursing homes and assisted living facilities.
Selling your home isn’t really an option. Any proceeds of the sale will be considered an asset for Medicaid purposes. So the only other option is to transfer your home. If you do this, you’ll suffer a waiting period to qualify for Medicaid. But as long as you prepare for this waiting period, it may not be a bad idea.
Can the State Take Your Home After You Die?
If you own a home in Texas that doesn’t mean you won’t be able to enter a nursing home. However, if Medicaid covers your care, they’re going to expect to take your home when you die. When you pass away, the state will file a claim against your estate. They will be given a super priority when it comes to paying creditors.
There are a few things that will prevent the state from taking your home when you pass away. These things include:
- You have a surviving spouse
- You have a child under 21
- You have a child with a disability
- You have an unmarried adult child still living in the home
Keep in mind, when your spouse passes away, your family will deal with the same issues. That claim may be enforced against your spouse when he dies.
How Can a Probate Attorney in Houston Help?
Protecting your assets from a nursing home requires planning. And this means planning ahead. If you’re wise, you’ll transfer your property long before you need to enter a nursing home. Your Houston probate lawyer can help you do this.
Call today and schedule a consultation with an experienced probate attorney in Houston, Texas. He can review your assets and help you come up with a long-term plan to protect your assets. As they say, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. When it comes to protecting your assets, you need to plan ahead.