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Does Applying for Medicaid on an Incapacitated Person's Behalf Require a Guardianship?

  • September 25th, 2014
Q
My mother-in-law is in a nursing home and is mentally and physically incapacitated. She has run out of funds and needs to apply for Medicaid. We do not have a power of attorney or guardianship. We are supplying the information requested by Medicaid for the application. Is it necessary to have a guardianship for her before she can receive Medicaid? 
A

While it may depend on your state’s Medicaid agency, the real question is whether you can get them the information they need and have access to her funds to pay her monthly income to the nursing home. If you’re able to accomplish this without being appointed guardian, it shouldn’t be necessary for purposes of Medicaid. The facility may still want someone to become guardian in order to make health care decisions for your mother-in-law. Your situation is a prime example of why we urge everyone to execute a durable power of attorney and health care directive.

For more on guardianship, click here.

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Last Modified: 09/25/2014

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