Law Firm of Gallo & Spero, LLP - Staten Island, NY. We are Staten Island's premier Personal Injury and Elder Law Attorneys providing the best possible outcome for your accident claim and the best possible estate and medicaid planning protection of your hard earned assets.

2300 Victory Blvd.
Staten Island, New York 10314

(718) 761-6464

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​​Medicaid Asset Protection Trust
                     
Currently, the cost of a nursing home may well exceed $15,000 per month. This is unaffordable for most people, forcing them to apply for Medicaid assistance. Typically, unless you have long-term care insurance, you are not covered and will need to privately pay for your nursing home care. Assuming you need to apply for Medicaid, without the proper planning in place, your home will be liened for the amount owed to Medicaid.  You may also be forced to sell your home in order to pay for your care. At a minimum, upon your death the government will collect on the lein through estate recovery. Simply put, if no planning is done, a long-term stay in a nursing home could cause you lose your home. Although there are some narrow exceptions, this is the general rule.

Generally, the way to protect your home an other assets is to transfer them out of your name.  However, there are many complex rules involved in making such transfers.  For instance, simply transferring your home without retaining control can be dangerous and costly.  A simple transfer not only results in a complete loss of control over the asset, it will result in unnecessary and often substantially higher taxes. A much more viable option is transfer your home to a Medicaid Asset Protection Trust.    

Although the trust is irrevocable (as well as other factors limiting your control), you may retain significant control over your home and other assets such as:

  1. The right to receive the income (i.e., rent, dividends, etc...);
  2. The exclusive right to live in your home for your entire life;
  3. You may also reserve the right to change beneficiaries; as well as
  4. the right to remove the trustee.
            
Much like a will, the trust can be further tailored to suit to your wishes. For example, if your child predeceases you, you may wish that the shares of your minor grandchildren continue to be held in trust until they reach majority age of 18 years (or any older age of your choosing).  You may also want to preserve a beneficiary’s share if he or she is disabled.  

It is pertinent to note with the drafting of such trusts that there is a careful balancing act between protecting your assets from Medicaid liens and maintaining the maximum control and tax savings for you. Only a well versed, skilled attorney in the area of Elder Law can properly draft this highly complex and effective elder plan strategy.

For further information,  please contact Mark Gallo, Esq. at (718) 761-6464 for a free consultation.

Law Firm of Gallo & Spero, LLP - Staten Island, NY Elder Law, Estate Planning, Personal Injury Accident Attorneys