MassHealth vs. Irrevocable Trusts – a Concerning Trend

What is happening?

There has been a concerning trend with MassHealth’s treatment of irrevocable trusts. What once was a reliable asset protection strategy has now become a minefield of adverse and unlawful MassHealth decisions that result in benefit ineligibility.

In a nutshell, MassHealth caseworkers and hearing officers are denying MassHealth applicants eligibility because they are interpreting many irrevocable trusts to be countable. For example, MassHealth may deny…

From Nursing Home to Community Living – Could This Work for You?

Given the number of options available for at-home care and financial assistance from state Medicaid (called MassHealth or CommonHealth in Massachusetts) programs, we are now seeing a growing trend of nursing home residents regaining their independence and transitioning back into the community. This is a very attractive possibility for those individuals needing an increased level of care at some point in their life, but do not wish to permanently reside in a nursing home setting. Both

Maintaining Medicare Skilled Nursing Facility Coverage

Following a hospital inpatient stay of at least three days, Medicare will pay for care in a skilled nursing facility (SNF) for up to 100 days for each period of coverage. This is often called “rehabilitation” coverage and can be provided in a dedicated rehabilitation facility, certain parts of some hospitals, or in some facilities that also provide nursing home care. The purpose of this type of care is to transition the patient back to as much an independent level of self-care…

Understanding the Pros and Cons of a Life Estate

What is a life estate?

life estate is a type of ownership interest in real estate.  Most commonly the life estate is conferred by deed but may also be conferred in a will or trust.  The typical scenario pertains to a parent who wants to “give the house to the kids” for estate and asset protection planning purposes, but retain control over the property. The parent transfers the real estate by deed to the children reserving a life estate for him or herself. The parent is known as the “…