Thursday March 18, 1999
Subscribers may recall our Feb. 10, 1999 "LTC Bullet" (archived on the Center's web site at www.centerltc.com) entitled, "Medi-Cal (California Medicaid) is for Everyone?" It critiqued Zoran Basich's web site www.medi-plan.com which promotes his aggressive Medicaid planning services with a potpourri of multi-media hype.
Here we go again. The quoted text below comes from the web site of Medicaid planner and National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA) member Alice Salvo at www.salvolaw.com
Responsible long-term care advisors will continue to suffer as long as Medicaid planning strategies such as the ones featured on these web sites remain legal and easily accessible.
The Center for Long-Term Care Financing advocates strong federal and state legislation to eliminate Medicaid estate planning abuses and to encourage the purchase of private long-term care insurance. Only in this way can Medicaid be saved for the truly needy.
"HOW TO PROTECT YOUR ESTATE FROM NURSING HOME COSTS
"If you or your spouse enters a nursing home the cost of the nursing home may wipe out your life's savings. With proper planning you may be eligible for Medi-Cal. (California's version of Medicaid). If you or your spouse qualifies for this public benefit, Medi-Cal will pay for the high cost of nursing home care."
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"One of the most powerful planning strategies to qualify for Medi-Cal involves a Court Order. This planning strategy is very effective for married couples when one is in a nursing home. A document known as a Petition is filed with the Court. The Petition asks the Court for an Order directing the spouse in the nursing home to support the spouse at home. The Court may order the spouse in the nursing home to transfer assets and/or income to the spouse at home. This procedure may enable the spouse at home to retain all of his or her assets and/or income and qualify the spouse in the nursing home for Medi-Cal.
"Our office may also guide you through other planning strategies to qualify for Medi-Cal. These other planning strategies include but are not limited to: permissible spending of money, converting non-exempt assets to exempt assets, repairing or improving exempt assets, paying off debts, etc.
"In order to qualify for Medi-Cal you will need to go
through an involved application process. Our office can assist
you in this often complicated application process."