Macomb, MI asked in Elder Law and Real Estate Law for Michigan

Q: My father is 84 and recently moved into a senior apartment and is concerned about earnings from the sale of his house.

When the house is sold and the mortgage paid off, what is the best way to deal with any earnings he may have? And how will the earnings impact is ability to received medicaid if he needs to move to a nursing home?

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1 Lawyer Answer
John Joseph Rizzo III
John Joseph Rizzo III
  • Elder Law Lawyer
  • Traverse City, MI
  • Licensed in Michigan

A: If your father is single, the proceeds from the sale of the house would count against his $2,000 asset limit for Medicaid long-term care benefits. He would need to consult an elder law attorney to create a plan to save the proceeds, or spend it down, usually by paying the nursing home until the cash is depleted. You could plan at any time, even after he is in the nursing home. However, there is a five-year look back period for Medicaid that would penalize any outright gifts. The Medicaid rules are complex, and most elder law attorneys give free consultations.

If his senior apartment is subsidized in some way there is a possibility that the proceeds could disqualify him from the benefit.

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