Doesn’t Medicare Pay For Long-Term Care?

Medicare will only pay for 20 days in a nursing home except for limited circumstances when it can pay for part of an additional 80 days.

Medicaid, however, will pay for nursing home costs . . . if you qualify.

Many are frequently confused between Medicare and Medicaid. The names are similar but the benefits are very different. Medicare is a federal health insurance program available to anyone over 65 years of age, or under 65 and disabled. It has no financial requirements to qualify and has two primary parts: Part A, coverage for in-hospital care, extended care, some home health care, and hospice services; and Part B, which may cover outpatient care, some medical equipment like walkers or wheelchairs, and some preventive services, if you opt in and pay the premium for Part B coverage.

Medicaid, however, is potential health care coverage for those with limited resources and income. It can also cover nursing home costs, although it can be difficult to qualify for Medicaid. With proper planning, even short-notice crisis planning, you can qualify and protect your life savings, too. But paying for nursing home care without it can be almost impossible.

Do I Need To Plan For Long Term Care?

Long Term Care is expensive. It is often one of the most important concerns that comes with aging and traditional health insurance doesn’t cover it. Nursing homes often cost well over $8,000 per month in Mississippi. Without some kind of financial assistance, these costs can be financially devastating and without proper planning most people will end up paying for long term nursing home care until they run out of assets, and then turn to Medicaid to pay for the care. It does not have to happen this way.

Fortunately, with some planning and knowledge, you can protect your life savings and also receive Medicaid benefits for long term care costs. The earlier you start, the more you can protect to pass on to your loved ones. Call Davis-Morris Law Firm today. You do have options.

Should I Just Give My Assets Away In Order To Qualify?

In short, no. While you certainly could give assets away, it is rarely the best idea to do so, especially when you may need long-term care.

You may not be aware that many assets do not count against you when applying for Medicaid. Your home is one of them. If you are married and one spouse applies for Medicaid to cover nursing home costs, the other spouse does not lose the family home. If a single (unmarried) person applies, any equity in their home up to $713,000 (2024) does not count against them in Mississippi. But, in either of these instances, if the homeowner gives their home away, or transfers the title for less than fair market value, they could be ineligible for Medicaid immediately and for a time period into the future.

Remember, too, that any uncompensated transfers (gifts or transfers for less than fair market value) made during the five-year look back period can subject you to a penalty and could disqualify you from receiving Medicaid for months or even years. It is always better to prepare a thorough asset protection plan than to simply begin giving assets away without complete knowledge of possible ramifications.

Call Today For A Consultation

It is never too late or too early to protect your assets, call Davis-Morris Law Firm today at 601-602-8874 to schedule an appointment so that I, attorney Angela Davis-Morris, can prepare your plan. You may be surprised at your options. From my office in Hattiesburg, I can assist clients throughout South-Central Mississippi.