Consider Staying In or Moving Back to New York

This is Strategy #22 from Lamson & Cutner’s publication, “25 Strategies to Prevent Financial Ruin from Long-Term Health Care Costs.”  Click here to see the other strategies.

If you’re planning to move out of state and anticipate needing long-term care, think twice. If you’ve already moved to another state and are now in need of home or nursing facility care, returning to New York may be your best option, both medically and financially. That’s because New York law is more generous in providing for long-term care needs than most other states.

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This is especially true for home care. Many states have very limited home care programs, and eligibility for their programs may be difficult to establish. New York on the other hand, has a huge home care program. There is a lot of funding for home care, and many providers.

We’ve had clients who retired to Florida. When their health started failing, they returned to New York, because they just couldn’t get the kind of health care in Florida that they could here.

Another reason New York is favored is that, unlike most if not all states, New York provides Medicaid-paid services to people who are living in the community, and at least for now, community-based services can be accessed quickly, because there is no “look back” period to check for transfers. No “penalty period” will arise from a transfer that would postpone your ability to qualify. In New York State you can do effective planning, shift assets as needed and very quickly become eligible for home care.

Note: there IS a five-year “look back” for nursing home Medicaid, and a legislated, but to-date unimplemented, 2 ½ year look back for community Medicaid services.  The implementation date for the look back for community Medicaid has been pushed back time and again, to its current scheduled date of March 31, 2024.  Questions remain about how, when, and even if it will ever be implemented.

New York also has many wonderful nursing homes, in which Medicaid pays for the vast majority of patients.  There are only a tiny handful that do NOT accept Medicaid.  So you need not fear that you will not be accepted into a “good” nursing home because you will be on Medicaid.

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