In this Elder Law Minute, Wes Coulson discusses the importance of being sure to not sign a personal guarantee of payment in nursing home admissions paperwork.
Greetings I’m Wes Coulson from Dent Coulson Elder Law and this will be your Elder Law minute. We’re happy to present these because we think we can help inform you as to the ways in which we can help you and the things that you need to think about relative to the elder care and estate planning journey. Hope you enjoy!
Often when we’re hired, the circumstance is such that the family member on whose behalf we’re going to do planning is already a nursing home resident, generally very recently has become a nursing home resident, so I want to get this information out because it’s important for people to know at the time of nursing home admission.
If you are signing the admissions paperwork on behalf of a loved one, which if they have Alzheimer’s that’s going to be the case, one of the questions, the really important question is “does that make you personally responsible for the cost of their nursing home care?” Well, first the mere fact that you sign on behalf as a power of attorney agent doesn’t. What makes you personally responsible is, if you have signed something that is called a personal guarantee of payment.
In saying that, I’m not expecting people who are watching this to have the legal skills to go through an entire nursing home admissions contract to know what they’re looking for, so my suggestion there is practical. If you’re looking at that paperwork just say, “I’m not being asked to sign any kind of a personal guarantee of payment am I, because if I am, I’m not going to do that.” If the nursing home won’t accept your loved one for admission without your personal guarantee payment, then it’s probably a good idea to either get them to change their mind on that or if it comes down to it, to find another nursing home, because at nursing home cost being what they are, you don’t want to wipe out your own savings paying for your loved one’s nursing home care.
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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 (IL) or (314) 567-9292 (MO), or Contact Us and we will get in touch as soon as possible.