You are here: Practice Areas Elder Law Medicaid Eligibility

Medicaid Eligibility

General Information on Elder Law by MacCormack Law of Boston, MA

Qualifying for Benefits

A single person’s “countable assets” must not exceed $2,000.  For a married couple with one institutionalized spouse, the “community spouse resource allowance” must not exceed $119,220 plus the $2,000 limit for a single person.

There is a period of ineligibility for Medicaid for people who transfer assets.  The “look-back” period determines what transfers will be subject to penalties.  For transfers made before February 8, 2006, the “look back” period is 36 months before the Medicaid application (or 60 months for transfers made to certain trusts).   For transfers made after February 8, 2006, the “look-back” period for all transfers is 60 months.  Basically the new rule states that the penalty period will not begin until (1) the transferor has moved to a nursing home; (2) has spent down to the asset limit for Medicaid eligibility, (3) has applied for Medicaid coverage; and (4) has been approved for coverage but for the transfer period.