Vermont Medicaid covers many important types of care which seniors may require. Qualifying for Medicaid can also help you to protect your personal assets by ensuring you do not have to spend all of your money or sell your property in case you need nursing home services or other costly care.
While Vermont Medicaid is essential for many seniors, qualifying is difficult and could be impossible unless you have an advanced plan in place. A Vermont Medicaid lawyer at Unsworth LaPlante, PLLC can provide you with assistance in understanding Medicaid coverage and in taking steps to ensure that you can qualify for coverage when you need it. Give us a call today to learn more.
Why Do Seniors Need Vermont Medicaid?
Many seniors assume Medicare will provide them with all of the coverage they need for their healthcare services. Unfortunately, this is simply not the case. Medicare coverage includes:
- Hospital services through Medicare Part A
- Routine healthcare services, including doctor visits through Medicare Part B
- Prescription drug coverage through Medicare Part D
Many people opt to purchase Medicare Part C as well, which is a Medicare advantage plan that provides supplemental coverage. While Medicare Part A is free if you or your spouse worked for long enough and paid Medicare taxes, there are premiums for other Medicare policies. These premiums can be very expensive for a senior on a tight budget.
In addition to paying premiums, there may be substantial co-insurance costs and deductible costs. Medicare lists some of the costs patients are expected to cover. For example, if you have Part A for hospital services, you have a $1,288 deductible for services each year. There are also co-insurance costs, which can necessitate hundreds of dollars in additional expenditures. For far too many seniors living on Social Security, Medicare coinsurance and deductible costs are simply too expensive.
Even for those who can afford fees for Medicare, there are some coverage restrictions which prevent seniors from being able to get their essential expenses paid. For example, Medicare only covers nursing homes if skilled medical services are required. Nursing home patients usually need custodial care, not skilled services, and custodial care is not covered.
Due to the high costs and these coverage limitations, many Vermont seniors need Medicaid so they can get their medical expenditures paid and get the care they need without having to spend all of the money they have saved up during the course of their lives.
How Can You Qualify for Medicaid?
If you are concerned about having to pay for nursing home costs or other high bills for medical care, you should create a plan to ensure that you can qualify for Medicaid when you need to. Medicaid has strict limits on income, and strict limits on resources. If you own too much, you cannot get covered. Many seniors own too much.
If you can’t get covered, you end up having to spend your money until resources fall below the allowable amounts. Then and only then will Medicaid pay for the bills for nursing home costs and other medical expenses. You could be forced to give up your legacy.
The good news is, this does not have to happen. A Vermont Medicaid lawyer can help you to create a Medicaid plan which allows you to obtain Medicaid coverage while structuring ownership of your assets to keep the assets safe. This generally involves creating and transferring assets into an irrevocable trust.
Medicaid tries to prevent strategic asset transfers which people use to qualify for nursing home care. However, if you make your plans at least five years before you need nursing home coverage, you should be able to protect the maximum value of assets. If you make your plans and transfer assets within the five years before you need Medicaid, a period of disqualification is imposed based on the value of the transferred assets.
Getting Help from a Vermont Medicaid Lawyer
Unsworth LaPlante, PLLC will assist you in structuring the ownership of your assets to make Medicaid qualification possible and to help you avoid Medicaid estate recovery. Our legal team wants to help you preserve and protect your legacy and not lose all that you have worked a lifetime for just because of costly medical bills. To find out more about the Vermont Medicaid planning process, join us for a free seminar. You can also give us a call at (802) 879-7133 or contact us online to learn more.