As we grow older, medical care becomes more important. At some point, most people will require some form of long-term medical care. Sadly, most people are unprepared for the financial burden that comes with such care. With average monthly costs in excess of $8,000 per month for a full-time care facility, financial ruin can occur within a few months, leaving little or nothing for the heirs.
Long-term care health insurance is an option for some, if purchased ahead of time. But some are not able to purchase the insurance because of the cost or age that prevents them from qualifying. Many policies have deductibles or limits on coverage that could leave the covered exposed to liability or unable to get the care needed.
Medi-Cal exists as an option to pay for long-term medical costs without burdening the family. Medi-Cal provides medical care to low-income individuals and the disabled. For some, Medi-Cal is the option of last resort to receive desperately needed medical care.
The rules to qualify for Medi-Cal can be restrictive and complex. It’s not as simple as providing one’s bank statements. There are a variety of regulations involving look-back periods, income caps, transfer penalties, and waiting periods.
Even after qualifying for Medi-Cal, Medi-Cal has the right to reimbursement from the estate for all care provided. The right of reimbursement encumbers all property of the estate. So even if some property is saved, the estate can be raided after death, leaving the heirs with nothing.
The good news is that proactive Medi-Cal planning can make it easier to qualify for Medi-Cal and eliminate reimbursement. This will leave more of your estate for your heirs and reduce delays in getting the medical care you need.
Contact Yeager Law for any comments, questions, or concerns.