Government statistics show that literally hundreds of billions of dollars of uncompensated care is provided by family member caregivers to those with Alzheimer’s. This opens up a great planning opportunity for both Medicaid and VA benefits.
It is possible to compensate family member caregivers and not have the payments count as gifts, if done correctly (and this is important), for those applying for Medicaid. We’ve also helped a number of veterans and widowed spouses of veterans use that compensation as a means for qualifying for the VA Aid and Attendance benefits.
In this Elder Law Minute, Wes Coulson, Southern Illinois Elder Law attorney, discusses ways to compensate family member caregivers for those with Alzheimer’s relative to Medicaid and VA benefits.
Alzheimer’s, Family Member Caregivers, and Medicaid and VA Benefits
Hi, I’m Wes Coulson and this is your Elder Law Minute. A great deal of care provided to people with Alzheimer’s is provided by family members in the home setting. In fact, government statistics show that literally hundreds of billions of dollars of uncompensated care is provided to those with Alzheimer’s by family members. There’s also a great planning opportunity in that, in two respects.
First, if the person being cared for is a veteran or a widowed spouse of a veteran, it is possible to compensate the family member as a caregiver and use that as a basis for qualifying for the VA Aid and Attendance benefits. We’ve successfully helped quite a few clients with that.
The other way in which it can be very helpful is that payments to a family member, if it’s done correctly (and if it’s done correctly is a very important qualifier here), are not counted as gifts for Medicaid purposes. So, it can be a very constructive means of transferring ownership of assets out of the name of the Alzheimer’s sufferer into the name of another family member. That’s important not just from the compensation standpoint, but to allow some money to be set aside in a safe place so that if it’s needed later to pay for care in other settings, if you choose to pay privately, there’s money set aside for that. And it’s also very valuable in helping to establish government benefits assistance.
So, if you’re a home caregiver for someone with Alzheimer’s give us a call. We really can help. Thanks.
For more information on Alzheimer’s and family member caregivers, visit these articles:
- Paying Family Member Caregivers: A Blessing or a Curse?
- Alzheimer’s Caregiving: The importance of managing your workload and stress
- Family Member Caregivers and VA Benefits
“Your Trusted Advisor on the Elder Care Journey”
Coulson Elder Law is dedicated to providing families in the St. Louis area with their Elder Law needs. Our practice areas include Asset Preservation Planning, Veterans Benefits, Medicaid Eligibility, Alzheimer’s Planning, Special Needs Planning, Estate Planning and more. We understand the financial challenges you may face as you and your loved ones grow older. At Coulson Elder Law, our clients’ well-being is our number one priority. For immediate help, call (618)632-7000 or (314)567-9292 or Contact Us and we will get in touch as soon as possible.