If you ask the average person how he or she expects to pay for long-term care if it is needed at some point in time this individual would probably say that Medicare will pick up the tab.
In fact this is a misconception. Those who have the foresight to consult with an elder law attorney before making any assumptions will learn that in fact Medicare does not pay for an extended stay in an assisted living facility.
Though the program was set up to provide poor people with access to health care Medicaid has become a government program that seniors rely on when they find that they cannot pay for these expenses out-of-pocket. The Kaiser Family Foundation tells us that 70% of nursing home residents are receiving Medicaid.
There are upper financial resource limits that you must stay within to qualify for the program, so homeowners have questions about the rules. In fact your home is not considered to be a countable asset when Medicaid is making a determination with regard to your eligibility.
The caveat here would be an upper equity limit of $525,000 which can be raised to as much as $786,000 at the discretion of each individual state. It should be noted that there is no equity limit if the Medicaid applicant’s spouse or a dependent is living in the home.
States are required to seek recovery for money spent after the death of the Medicaid recipient, but the house is off-limits if a spouse or dependent is still residing in the home.