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Question for the Money Doctors

Question submitted on Nov 27, 2012.

Question

My mother may have to go to Medicaid soon, and she has some resources that would be taken for care to go down to the $2000 limit for Medicaid eligibility. Can she give her children a gift to reduce her resources w/o her being accused of fraud?

Answer

Generally speaking, the answer to your question is no. If your mother gives away assets inside of the lookback period, currently 5 years, she would be subject to a penalty period before she would be eligible for Medicaid coverage. There are some exceptions to the imposition of the penalty, so you may want to consult a qualified elder care law attorney who is licensed in the state where your mother resides.


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