Newly proposed Legislative Bills 268 and 542 take aim at broadening Medicaid estate recovery by creating liens against real estate gifted to family members.
These bills provide for the creation of liens for recovery of nursing home costs when there is a transfer of real estate between related parties. Therefore, if you gift real estate to a family member to protect it from the nursing home, DHHS will put a lien on that piece of property. Then, DHHS could come back and enforce the lien, which could possibly force your family members to sell the real estate in order to pay back the Medicaid benefits you received in the nursing home.
If this legislation is passed, it would eliminate the use of life estate deeds as an estate planning tool to protect your real estate from Medicaid estate recovery. These bills apply only to transfers of real estate on or after the effective date the legislation is enacted. If you have no nursing home insurance, it is urgent you take action now to protect your family’s legacy by implementing a proper estate plan.
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