If you are married and looking at applying for Medicaid, there are bound to be numerous concerns regarding the “community spouse,” the one who is not going into the nursing home, and what assets they are entitled to keep.
One important asset the community spouse is entitled to keep is the residence. In addition to that, they also get something called a community spouse resource allowance, which is an amount of non-exempt assets that the community spouse gets to keep. These amounts vary in Illinois and in Missouri. The fact that the community spouse gets to keep assets has a lot to do with the planning that we do to help community spouses keep as much of those assets as possible.
In this Elder Law Minute, Wes Coulson, Southern Illinois Elder Law attorney, discusses another topic from the video series Married Couples and Medicaid and explains what assets the community spouse is entitled to keep.
Married Couples and Medicaid: How Much Assets Can the Community Spouse Keep?
Hi, I’m Wes Coulson and this is your Elder Law Minute. This is another in our series of videos on how the Medicaid rules apply in the case of a married couple. Let’s talk today about what assets the community spouse, the one who is not in the nursing home, is entitled to keep.
First, in addition to the exempt assets that apply otherwise (there are different videos on that), one important thing here is that the community spouse is entitled to keep the residence, but in addition the community spouse gets something called a community spouse resource allowance, an amount of non-exempt assets which generally means financial assets that that spouse gets to keep. In Illinois it is a fixed figure – $109,560. In Missouri it’s not less than a minimum and not more than a maximum – for 2018 the minimum is $24,720 and the maximum is $123,600. So, the community spouse gets to keep half of the assets subject to that minimum or maximum.
That fact that the community spouse gets to keep assets has a lot to do with the planning that we do to help community spouses. Figuring out what things that we can do to have them keep as much as possible. Maybe using some of the money and converting it into exempt assets that they can keep. Figuring out which assets are the wisest ones to keep, which ones are the wisest to convert to income or do something else with. Really a complex subject, but the good news is – one that in the right hands can produce some really, really positive results for you.
It’s something for which you really need an elder law attorney. We’re very experienced in doing this, get very good results for people, and we’ll be happy to help. Thanks.
For more information on planning for married couples, visit these articles:
- Will Transferring Assets Between Spouses Cause A Medicaid Transfer Penalty?
- Withdrawals From Joint Accounts: Are They Subject To Transfer Penalties?
- What’s the Difference Between Estate Planning and Asset Preservation Planning?
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Dent-Coulson Elder Law is dedicated to providing families in the St. Louis area with their Elder Law needs. Our practice areas include Asset Preservation Planning, Veterans Benefits, Medicaid Eligibility, Alzheimer’s Planning, Special Needs Planning, Estate Planning and more. We understand the financial challenges you may face as you and your loved ones grow older. At Dent-Coulson Elder Law, our clients’ well-being is our number one priority. For immediate help, call (618) 632-7000 or (314) 567-9292, or Contact Us and we will get in touch as soon as possible.