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Many individuals who are planning for their long-term care needs often determine that they will need to apply for Medicaid benefits. However, there are numerous hoops to jump through in order to qualify for such benefits.

In order to be approved for Medicaid, individuals in Kansas City must meet certain income and asset requirements. In general, an individual’s total assets cannot amount to more than the Individual Resource Allowance. What the Individual Resource Allowance is varies between states. For example, in Missouri it is merely $999.99, but in Kansas it is $2,000. That being said, some property can be exempted when determining whether an individual is eligible for Medicaid. Things become more complicated if the Medicaid applicant has a spouse, since this means a process called the division of assets must be done.

Applicants may be tempted to give away property to others in order to meet Medicaid’s income and asset requirements. However, this could backfire, as it could constitute a violation of the Medicaid Transfer Penalty. If this happens, it could disqualify the applicant from receiving benefits for years.

As you can see, Medicaid planning can be quite complicated. However, help is available. The professionals at Stockton & Stern, LLC, assist their clients by creating asset protection plans. These plans may lower the amount of assets in an individual’s estate so that the individual can both receive Medicaid benefits and still be able to provide his or her loved ones with an inheritance. Those who are applying for Medicaid may learn more about the law by visiting the following Medicaid and long-term care planning overview.