Medicaid Assisted Living

Assisted Living residences are adult apartment buildings or communities that provide a secure environment for seniors who are generally self-directing. These communities usually offer restaurant-style dining, housekeeping, laundry, and other services, and are sometimes associated with a “graduated care” facility that provides a range of housing options from independent living to skilled nursing care.

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Traditionally, Assisted Living facilities have been private pay only. However, that is changing somewhat in New York as the population ages.  Gradually, more and more facilities are offering at least some Medicaid rooms or apartments.  There are also some Assisted Living residences for which most or all of the rooms are paid for by Medicaid.  These rooms are part of New York Medicaid's Assisted Living Program ("ALP").  This type of Medicaid still falls under the “Community Medicaid” umbrella.

While many seniors are moving into Assisted Living while they are still independent, some may need help with the Activities of Daily Living ("ADLs").  ADLs include dressing, bathing, eating, toileting, and “transferring,” which means moving from one place to another such as from your bed to a chair.

If you do need assistance with ADLs, you are usually permitted to receive it in an Assisted Living facility. Even if you live in a facility that does not accept Medicaid to pay for living expenses, if you are eligible for Medicaid Home Care, you can usually receive home health services in the facility that are paid for by Medicaid.

Whether you live in a private pay or Medicaid-paid Assisted Living residence, it makes sense to protect your income with long-term care planning.  By creating and funding the right kind of trust, assets are moved out of your name.  Those assets can still be used to pay for a private pay Assisted Living.  Then if you later move to a nursing home, you will already be at least partway through the five-year lookback that Medicaid uses to delay access to Medicaid funds.  With luck you will be beyond the five years and be able to access Medicaid to pay for your nursing home immediately.  Read more about Medicaid Asset Protection Trusts here.

The sooner you take action, the more of your life's savings you can protect.  Contact us now!

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