Don't let adult children pay for your nursing home stay.While long-term care will become necessary for many New Yorkers as they grow older, the cost can quickly eat through your savings, and Medicare isn’t as helpful as you’d expect. If you are looking at the possibility of a nursing home stay, you may be concerned that your children will end up having to pay when your funds run out. 

When a Child May Be on the Hook for a Parent’s Nursing Home Bills

While there are filial laws on the books in some states that are rarely ever put into practice, the bottom line is that children in New York are extremely unlikely to be held legally liable for a parent’s nursing home costs. 

There’s a potential catch here, though. If you end up needing Medicaid to cover the costs of care, some nursing homes allow children to voluntarily choose to guarantee payment until Medicaid approves your application. The nursing home may have your son or daughter sign a document stating that they will either directly assist you in applying for Medicaid, or even pay your bills privately until Medicaid starts covering the monthly bill.

The best way to shield your family from these devastating costs is to work with an experienced attorney to go over the nursing home’s admission agreement, and also advise you on:

  • Methods for qualifying for Medicaid and dealing with the five-year lookback period that can prevent access to benefits for a prolonged period (Any money or property gifted to family members in the last five years will count against you when applying.)
  • Choosing the right time to apply for Medicaid to maximize benefits and minimize out-of-pocket costs
  • Using asset protection strategies like trusts so what you worked hard to build up over your life isn’t lost to the nursing home

Protect Your Family With a Long-Term Care Planning Lawyer

The possibility of dragging your kids into an extremely expensive situation is a strong reason to plan ahead for needing long-term care. Are you in need of a nursing home’s services but aren’t sure how to cover the costs or where to start? Contact Alatsas Law Firm today and get the help you need.

Ted Alatsas
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Trusted Brooklyn, New York Family Law Attorney helping NY residents with Elder Law and Asset Protection
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