In this Elder Law Minute, Wes Coulson explains why life estate planning is essential for those who own additional property aside from their primary residence.
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!
This is another in our series of videos on what an Illinois Medicaid applicant can and can’t keep.
Today i’m going to talk about non-residential real estate. So what’s non-residential real estate? Well, that would include anything from a non-primary residence, so a secondary residence, rental property, a vacation property, a timeshare, a farm that doesn’t qualify as a residence because the house is situated on that acreage. All of those are non-exempt assets, and given that, for a single or widowed applicant you can only keep two-thousand dollars worth of assets, unless you have some really low value real estate, you can see immediately that ownership of that is going to be a problem. So this is something simply put that you need to deal with through planning. Sometimes we can do things with life estates, sometimes you just have to bite the bullet and sell it, and get it into the form of something else that we can deal with.
One of the questions that comes up is, “well what if you have this real estate and you go o.k, I can’t keep it, but hey what happens until I can sell it?” There are rules that say that if you have the property listed for sale, its temporarily exempt for up to 6 months, and then after the 6 months if it still hasn’t sold they’re going to look at it again and see if that means that you just haven’t found a buyer, or whether you don’t really want to sell it. So it’s really worth a hundred-thousand and you have it on the market for two-hundred thousand, which means obviously nobody’s going to buy it, in which case they would pull the exemption.
There are also some special rules if you are only a part owner of real estate. Rather than going into the rules, i’ll tell you that this is one of the things, where our life estate planning that I have talked about in another video, can be particularly affected.
Moral of the story here, if you or a loved one who would be apply for Medicaid owns property other than a primary residence, you really need to see a qualified competent elder law attorney for help, so give us a call we can definitely help.
Also looking for information about Medicaid and Asset Preservation? Visit these articles:
“Your Trusted Advisor on the Elder Care Journey”
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.