If you're like most people, you want to age in a way that preserves your financial independence and personal autonomy. At Legacy Lawyers, our elder law attorneys can help you accomplish these goals while planning for long-term care needs and other special considerations.
For your convenience, we’ve compiled answers to a number of frequently asked questions regarding elder law issues. Should you have additional questions or concerns, please call us at (910) 452-3577 or contact us today to schedule an appointment.
- Will the state take my home if I end up in a nursing home?
- I’ve heard I can give away $15,000 a year, is this true?
Will the state take my home if I end up in a nursing home?
Medicaid refers to this practice as estate recovery. When applying for Medicaid, the state has you sign a document that allows it to make a claim against your estate to recover payments made by Medicaid during your lifetime. For most people, this amount will only be covered by the value of their homes.
Estate recovery will cause the home to be sold to pay the state of North Carolina back for what Medicaid has paid for the nursing home and medical expenses, unless a spouse, child under age 21, or another qualified individual still resides in the home. However, our elder law attorneys offer clients multiple solutions to this problematic outcome that will allow your legacy to pass to your loved ones as you intended.
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I’ve heard I can give away $15,000 a year, is this true?
Yes, the federal gift tax allows you to give away $15,000 per year without gift tax consequences. However, those gifts, no matter the amount, could result in months or years of ineligibility for Medicaid due to the program's strict 5-year look-back period. As such, gifts should be made with caution.
If a gift has already been made, and you or a loved one are applying for Medicaid, our office can help you avoid the penalties and assist you in getting qualified for the benefits you need.
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