Five FAQs about Medicaid and the Recent Medicaid Expansion
- What are the current Medicaid eligibility requirements?
Medicaid currently covers all those whose modified adjusted gross income is up to 133 percent of the federal poverty level ― this will increase to 138 percent in 2014 for states like New York that have opted into the Medicaid expansion program. For our elder law clients, there are also limits to the amount of resources you may have to qualify, but you may still be eligible if you own a home, a car and valuable personal effects. In addition, your spouse may own more if he or she is not applying for benefits ― this is why careful planning with an elder law attorney is essential before submitting your application.
- What does Medicaid cover?
For all who qualify, Medicaid covers the costs of home health care, nursing home care and community medical services such as doctor’s appointments, rehabilitation, laboratory testing, transportation to and from medical appointments, medical equipment and prescription drugs.
- What does “third-party liability” mean, and how does this affect Medicaid eligibility and payments?
States gather information regarding third parties ― including health insurers ― who may be paying benefits to a person applying for or already enrolled in Medicaid. What this means is that if you obtain benefits from a court-ordered settlement, an insurance company (health, auto, etc.), workers’ compensation or other third party, your Medicaid coverage may be affected. Note that state motor vehicle accident reports are also checked to see if you may be eligible for compensation from a third party.
- Will the state still be able to take assets out of my estate after I die?
Any medical services paid for by Medicaid after you turn age 55 or while you are residing in a medical institution may be payable out of your estate when you pass away.
- Is the Medicaid expansion a good thing for New York state?
A recent study by WalletHub shows that states opting into the Medicaid expansion program benefit most from the Affordable Care Act. WalletHub estimates that health insurance premiums could even drop by 40 percent or more over time.
For more than 40 years, Armstrong & Lamberti, PLLC has provided comprehensive and reliable legal services in the areas of Medicaid planning, advance medical directives, guardianships, estate planning (wills and trusts,) and estate and trust administration. Contact Armstrong & Lamberti, PLLC for a free consultation.