What is a Medicaid Compliant Annuity?

In this episode, Chris Berry answers: What is a Medicaid Compliant Annuity and how does it work?

Estate Attorney and Advisor Chris Berry of Castle Wealth Group answers questions on retirement and estate planning every Wednesday at 1pm. Register via this link or give our office a call at 844-885-4200.

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What is a medicaid annuity and how does it work? Welcome to Berry’s Bites, please join our host attorney and financial advisor Chris Berry. We always focus on first kind of what are you trying to accomplish what are your goals and then develop the best strategy to help you achieve the goal and then we picked the right tool so someone’s asking about a specific tool we call it a medicaid complying into it and really the only time we use these is when we’re in a situation where we have a loved one who is either in or about to go in a nursing home so we actually just submitted a medicaid application for a client uh today usually takes about a month for us to put these things together.

Here’s a situation i’ll just explain it that he is in a nursing home and nursing homes cost about eight to twelve thousand dollars per month right and current statistics say one out of two will need nursing home care in the average state of nursing homes two and a half years those are just the stats so they hadn’t done any pre-planning so there’s pre-planning strategies we have and i forget exactly how much but let’s say they had three hundred thousand dollars of countable assets and to qualify for medicaid you can only have two thousand dollars of total assets so where the medicaid compliant annuity came into play is that they had a loved one nursing home paying these long-term care costs and there are strategies that we can use at the last minute to try to protect these assets.

And so we used what we call a medicaid half-loaf plan really we call these generally just medicaid crisis plans so if you have a loved one in a nursing home you can spend down to that two thousand dollar asset limit or we may be able to do a medicaid half loaf plan so let’s say you have three hundred thousand dollars and what we can do is we can gift even within the five years let’s say 150 000 and so now this can go to family to be able to use for additional services for the individual and then the other 150 would have to go into the medicaid compliant annuity it actually just brings the money back to the person who is in the nursing home so that they can pay for the nursing home costs so in essence what we’ve done is half the money has to go into a medicaid compliant annuity.

That goes back to the nursing home to pay for care but what we’ve done at the end of the day is we’ve protected 150 000 and now got them qualified for medicaid so in terms of a timeline if you were to look at it what they’re going to do is for at least the first period this is going to be private pay and this is where the medicaid compliant annuity comes into play and then from there moving forward then we have medicaid covering that same cost of care so that says the 150 thousand dollars they private pay the other option is if they don’t do this then all three hundred thousand dollars has to be spent down until they’re to that two thousand dollar asset limit so that’s why we call it a half loaf plan it’s like a loaf of bread so where do we use medicaid compliant annuities we use medicaid compliant annuities when we’re doing crisis planning so if you have a loved one that’s in a nursing home right now then we may use a medicaid compliant annuity as one of the tools so that’s about the only time we use a medicaid annuity now prior to that we used to be able to use things called sole benefit trusts but the state of michigan in 2014 at least state of michigan and other states have done this too in 2014 said we can’t do these anymore and so now we’re forced to use at least in michigan medicaid compliant annuities. Thank you.

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