Q: Funding of trips to take care of elderly aunt
My wife and I recently relocated from Portland to Palm Springs. For the past 4 years my wife has acted as the Power of Attorney for her elderly aunt who has no kids and only a brother and sister who have been unable to care for her. My wife coordinated the placement of her in a care facility as she requires full time assistance. In addition, my wife’s aunt has no concept of her financial position, which was meager before my wife took over her finances. My wife negotiated payoffs on her debts and has been stashing her monthly retirement checks into her aunt’s checking account while her long term disability plan paid for her care facility. Her long term care plan expired earlier this year and we are now exhausting her funds over the coming years to pay for the facility, at which time Medicare will cover. My aunt wishes for my wife to fly up to go to her doctor appts... is it out of place to use her aunt’s funds to pay for these trips? It will not impact her care. Please advise. Thanks!
A: It's possible that Medicaid will see paying for your travel as a valid expense as long as it benefited your aunt and was not just for a visit. You will also have to check your Power of Attorney to make sure it authorizes you to make this kind of purchase. You would likely benefit from an appointment with an experienced Medicaid attorney.
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