One of the greatest fears of older Americans is that they may end up in a nursing home.Read more
Survey Results: Most Say Medicaid Planning Is Ethical
- July 23rd, 2018
[This article was originally published on April 21, 2005. The links were updated on July 23, 2018.]
Last month we asked site visitors and readers of the April issue of ElderLaw News the following question:
Local Elder Law Attorneys in Ashburn, VA
Hale Ball Carlson Baumgartner Murphy PLC
Jean Galloway Ball is certified in Elder Law by the National Elder Law Foundation. She is a 1977 honors graduate of the National Law Center, George Washington University, and she did her undergraduate work at the University of California at Berkeley, graduating Phi Beta Kappa in 1971. She is admitted to practice in Vir...
Margaret A. O'Reilly, PC
Margaret A. O’Reilly is an estate planning and elder law attorney with over thirty-five years of legal experience. Attorney O’Reilly graduated from Duke University with a degree in psychology, and received her law degree from Northeastern University School of Law in Boston, Massachusetts. For over 15 y...
Felinton Elder Law & Estate Planning Centers
Mindy Felinton concentrates in the areas of Medicaid planning, Veterans' Benefits, asset protection, nursing home planning, elder law, wills, estate planning, trusts, living wills, powers of attorney, probate administration and trust administration and began her legal career 30 years ago as an Assistant State Attorney...
"Medicaid planning has been targeted by Health and Human Services Secretary Michael O. Leavitt, who argues that people should not be able to protect assets by transferring them to their children and then qualify for Medicaid coverage of nursing home care. Do you believe that such Medicaid planning is ethical?"
The results: nearly two-thirds of respondents -- 63 percent -- said yes, Medicaid planning is ethical, while the rest -- 37 percent -- said it was unethical.
With Medicaid budgets soaring nationwide, state and federal officials are floating proposals to crack down on the financial arrangements involved in Medicaid planning and make seniors pay more for long-term care, according to a recent article in the Chicago Tribune, "Medicaid Loophole for Middle Class at Risk."
Connecticut, Massachusetts, Minnesota and New Hampshire have proposed making it more difficult for the elderly to transfer assets and qualify for Medicaid, and more than a dozen states have similar plans waiting in the wings, says Charles Sabatino, chair of the public policy committee for the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys.
But advocates for the elderly respond that Medicaid has become a crucial safety net for ill seniors who need long-term care, and weakening protections would be a severe blow to many families.
Illinois elder law attorney Steven C. Perlis is quoted in the article as saying that most middle-class seniors who turn to Medicaid for nursing home care are "people who are up against the wall because of a serious illness, who have never depended on a government handout in their lives."
Any asset transfers are usually minimal, Perlis says, and represent an attempt to give resources to a healthy spouse who needs the money, or to leave something to children who provided care and assistance before a parent was institutionalized.
To read the full Chicago Tribune article, click here. (Free registration may be required to view article.)
Last Modified: 07/23/2018