If this sounds familiar, you’re right—recent years have seen many extensions of rules regarding Medicaid. But for New Yorkers, this most recent change to Medicaid Community Based Care is a result of a New York State’s 2022-2023 budget and not the pandemic.
There has always been a five-year lookback period for Medicaid applicants seeking coverage for long-term nursing home care. Any transfer or sale of assets within a five year makes an applicant ineligible and nursing home costs have to be paid by the person or the family until the person spends down enough of their assets to become eligible.
The look-back is now being applied to Medicaid Community or Home Care. This is a first for New York State, and it requires seniors to do advance planning if they wish to receive Medicaid Community and Home Care services and protect their assets.
After October 1, 2022, anyone applying for Medicaid Home Care benefits will be subject to at least a 15-month lookback. It’s also possible the person and their spouses will have to provide records of up to 2.5 years before the application date.
The lookback period is not as long as for long-term nursing care, but this will still have a negative impact on those who need Medicaid Home Care.
We can’t stress this enough: As of right now, there is NO look-back or penalty period for Medicaid Home Care benefits. This includes home health aides, adult day care and community based services.
If you are considering applying for Medicaid for a loved one or for yourself, you need to act now. Once these rules change, you or your loved one may lose their eligibility. The time to plan for this care is today. Not tomorrow, not next week.
In time, the Medicaid Home Care lookback period will increase to 30 months, and an additional month will be added until the period for asset transfer records reaches 2.5 years.
As a premier Elder Law firm, we help families and individuals plan to protect assets and ensure eligibility for needed care. Call us today at 516-307-1236 and learn how we can help you and your family.