Trusted by Three Generations

Trusted With Estate Planning by Three Generations


Planning for Long-Term Care & Protecting Your Assets

Medicaid can be a crucial resource for long-term healthcare, but the rules and regulations are complex. There is number of strategies that may allow you and your family to protect your assets while securing Medicaid eligibility. Our experienced attorneys can guide you through the intricacies of Medicaid planning and regulations in New Jersey and New York, ensuring you or your loved ones receive the care they need without sacrificing your home and other hard-earned savings.

Frequently Asked Questions About Medicaid Planning

Medicaid planning refers to the process of arranging your finances to qualify for Medicaid coverage for long-term care, while preserving your assets for your beneficiaries. It involves understanding Medicaid eligibility requirements and employing legal strategies to protect your assets. Medicaid LTC planning is a critical process for those seeking to manage the high costs of long-term care while preserving assets. It involves understanding complex Medicaid eligibility rules, restructuring assets, possibly setting up trusts or annuities, and planning asset transfers. The goal is to qualify for Medicaid, which can cover expenses like nursing home care, without depleting all the individual’s or family’s assets.

Long-term care can be costly, and Medicaid is a key resource for covering these expenses. Proper Medicaid planning helps ensure that you can receive necessary care without depleting all your assets, thereby protecting your family and securing your financial legacy for your loved ones.

Qualifying for Medicaid while preserving assets often involves strategies like creating trusts, spending down assets in a permissible manner, converting countable assets into exempt assets, and making certain transfers. It’s a delicate process that requires legal expertise to navigate.

Medicaid’s look-back period is a time frame during which all asset transfers are scrutinized. Currently, in New Jersey, this period is 60 months (5 years) for most asset transfers. Transfers made during this period may affect your eligibility for Medicaid and cause penalty.

A Medicaid Trust is a legal tool designed to protect assets while allowing an individual to qualify for Medicaid. Assets in the trust are not counted towards Medicaid’s asset limit, but the trust must be structured and implemented correctly to be effective.

Assets placed in a Medicaid Trust are generally not under your direct control. The trust is irrevocable, meaning it cannot be altered or revoked without the beneficiaries’ consent. Typically, your children or other close family members would be named as trustees and beneficiaries and the trustee and will be able to control the assets in the trust, as well as receive income generated by the assets and have access to the principal of the trust. The structure may vary depending on the state where you’re applying for Medicaid and your individual financial and family circumstances.

Your home may be an exempt asset for Medicaid eligibility, but proper planning is crucial to protect it from Medicaid estate recovery. Strategies may include transferring the home to a trust or a caregiver child, depending on your circumstances.

Gifting assets can be a part of Medicaid planning, but it must be done carefully due to the look-back period. Improper gifting can lead to penalties and a period of Medicaid ineligibility.

Risks include potential ineligibility for Medicaid if done incorrectly, penalties for improper transfers, and the loss of control over certain assets. Professional guidance is essential to minimize these risks.

The earlier, the better. Starting well before the need for long-term care arises, ideally more than five years in advance, allows for the most effective planning and avoidance of the look-back period and related penalties.

Frequently Asked Questions About Medicaid Eligibility

Eligibility for Medicaid LTC is not only based on financial criteria but also on the medical necessity of long-term care. Individuals typically must be 65 years or older, blind, or disabled and demonstrate a need for a level of care typically provided in a nursing home. Specific criteria for the level of care required can vary by state.

Income limits are set at a percentage of the Federal Poverty Level, which can change annually. In many states, the income limit for an individual applying for Medicaid LTC in New Jersey is $2,742 per month (as of 2023), but these figures can vary. For those with income above this limit, “spend down” programs or Qualified Income Trusts may be used to still qualify for Medicaid.

For an individual, the asset limit is often around $2,000, but it varies by state. Countable assets typically include bank accounts, stocks, bonds, and real estate other than the primary residence. Certain assets like a primary home (with an equity limit of $1,033,000 in New Jersey as of 2023), personal belongings, a car, and burial plots are usually exempt.

Exemptions are crucial in Medicaid planning. Besides the primary home, one vehicle, personal belongings, and burial plots, other exemptions may include life insurance with a face value under a certain limit, certain types of annuities, and assets in specific kinds of trusts. The rules for these exemptions are complex and state-specific.

Protecting a home from estate recovery involves careful planning. A house may be exempt if a spouse, child under 21, blind or disabled child, or caretaker child (who lived in the home for two years prior to the Medicaid recipient’s institutionalization) resides in it. In certain circumstances, transferring a home to these individuals may avoid estate recovery, but such transfers must be done carefully due to the look-back period.

The look-back period is a critical element in Medicaid planning. It’s a timeframe during which Medicaid reviews any asset transfers to ensure they weren’t done to qualify for Medicaid. This includes selling assets below market value or giving them away. Understanding and planning for the look-back period is essential to avoid penalties.

The standard look-back period is 60 months (5 years) in most states. However, it’s important to note that this period is not retroactive from the date of Medicaid application but from the date the individual is applying for and is eligible for Medicaid.

Violating the look-back rules typically results in a period of ineligibility for Medicaid. The length of this penalty period is determined by dividing the value of the transferred assets by the average monthly cost of nursing home care in the applicant’s state. This penalty can delay much-needed Medicaid coverage.

Gifting money or assets during the look-back period can lead to penalties unless they meet certain exemptions, like gifts to a spouse or a disabled child. Small, occasional gifts may not trigger penalties, but large gifts or asset transfers will likely be scrutinized. It’s important to consult with an elder law attorney for specific advice, as the rules can be quite complex.

Medicaid estate recovery is a process where the state seeks reimbursement from the estate of a deceased Medicaid recipient for the costs of services like nursing home care. The extent of recovery can vary by state, but typically includes all assets passing through probate.

Preparing for a Medicaid LTC application involves several steps: organizing financial documents, understanding your state’s specific Medicaid rules, and possibly restructuring assets. It often involves legal strategies like setting up trusts or annuities, spending down assets in a permissible way, and ensuring compliance with the look-back period.

Long-term care insurance is an alternative for those who can afford the premiums and want to avoid Medicaid’s strict financial limits. It covers long-term care services and provides more flexibility than Medicaid, which has stringent eligibility requirements.

The Medicaid Look-Back Period is a critical timeframe during which Medicaid examines any asset transfers to ensure they were not made to qualify for Medicaid. This period typically covers the 60 months (5 years) immediately preceding the Medicaid application. During this time, if assets were transferred for less than their fair market value (such as gifts or below-market sales), it can affect eligibility. The look-back period is not retroactive from the date of Medicaid application but starts from when the individual is applying for and is eligible for Medicaid. Notably, the rules and length of this period can vary by state, especially concerning transfers involving trusts.

If a violation of the look-back rules is found (i.e., if assets were transferred for less than fair market value), a penalty period is imposed. This period is a time during which the individual is ineligible for Medicaid LTC benefits. The penalty period is calculated by dividing the total value of the transferred assets by the average monthly cost of private nursing home care in the applicant’s state. For example, if $100,000 worth of assets were transferred and the average cost of care is $10,000 per month, the penalty period would be 10 months. The penalty period begins from the time the individual would otherwise be eligible for Medicaid, not from when the transfer occurred. This calculation varies by state, as the cost of care is not uniform across the country.

Yes, the income and assets of a spouse (community spouse) are considered in determining eligibility for Medicaid LTC. However, there are spousal impoverishment rules to protect the community spouse from being left without resources. These rules allow the spouse to retain a certain amount of assets and income.

Yes, Medicaid has specific rules for married couples. These rules take into account the needs of the community spouse, allowing them to keep a portion of the couple’s assets and income. The rules are designed to prevent the impoverishment of the community spouse while the other spouse receives Medicaid-funded long-term care.

Yes, the income and assets of a spouse (community spouse) are considered in determining eligibility. However, there are spousal impoverishment rules in place to protect the community spouse from being left without resources.

A Medicaid planning attorney helps navigate complex eligibility rules, advises on asset protection strategies, assists with the application process, and can provide legal representation if necessary.

Milvidskiy Law Group P.C. is a comprehensive elder law and estate planning firm dedicated to guiding seniors and their families through a variety of legal challenges associated with aging. Our expertise covers a wide range of services, including wills and trusts, asset protection, elder care and Medicaid planning, estate and inheritance tax planning, trust and estate administration, business succession planning, special needs planning, and more.

Why Choose Us?

Why Choose Us?

  • Experienced Team: Our elder law attorneys are well versed in Medicaid planning and application process both in New Jersey and New York and will help you determine the best route for your unique situation.
  • Full-Service Elder Law Practice: Not only we assist our clients with Medicaid planning, but we help their families with Medicaid application process to ensure that your planning strategy is properly executed.

  • Exceptional Customer Service: Our experienced staff is available to answer your questions and assist you every step of the way. You don’t have to go it alone.

What Our Clients Are Saying

Excellent5.0 Based on 63 reviews from ★★★★★ My husband and I had a very positive experience working with the Milvidskiy Law Group. They were very knowledge and professional and an overall pleasure to work with. I strongly recommend using this law firm.barbara W.barbara W. ★★★★★ This firm was wonderful and I highly recommend them. They took the time to explain everything to me as I set up my Estare plan. They answered all my questions and did not pressure me into anything I didnt want it need. I feel very at ease and relieved that this was taken care. I also know they remain there if I have any questions down the road. All I have to do is call. Best thing I did this year!!susan C.susan C. ★★★★★ I wanted to thank the Milvidskiy Group for making our Estate planning easy to understand with the help of their guidance. Laura Berkin and Pamela Carrea were great resources if we needed questions answered to aided us in the process. I would highly recommend this law firm to handle your estate planning. Thank YouPatricia P.Patricia P. ★★★★★ Everyone was so professional and provided very valuable information about estate planning an elder law that we needed for our family. I would highly recommend this firm they make you feel like family and truly care about their clients.Diana HDiana H ★★★★★ The Milvidskiy Law Group P.C. is extraordinarily talented in all aspects of estate planning. Mr. Milvidskiy began working on my plan by listening, asking questions and fully understanding my objectives. With great care and attention to detail, he created a strategy that fulfilled my wishes and protected my loved ones. Mr. Milvidskiy is not only skilled in his work but compassionate and caring. This attitude is reflected throughout his staff who are responsive to requests and are well-versed in the highest levels of customer service. I do not know anyone who enjoys thinking about wills, trusts and advanced directives, yet they are essential to the well-being of family and finances. The Milvidskiy Law Group makes these important questions easy to ponder as they guide the decision-making process. I am so happy that this task is accomplished and the peace of mind that I have is priceless.Venus M.Venus M. ★★★★★ Mr. Milvidskiy and his staffs are so professional and helpful all the time. I recommend them highly to anyone.Phoebi L.Phoebi L. ★★★★★ Attorney Milvidskiy is the best. He truly listens to your concerns, wants and needs. He explained everything to us and made sure we understood every aspect .I felt like family instead of a client. He is the best attorney I ever worked with. Highly recommend !Inna K.Inna K. ★★★★★ Milvidskiy team is the best. I’m so happy I found them in my time of need. From the very first meeting with the attorney I immediately knew there was someone to look out for my interest. Throughout the entire process, I was able to rely on them, sometimes receiving replies to my emails after hours or even on weekends. Everyone who works there is very knowledgeable but is also compassionate. They genuinely want to help and went above and beyond helping my family. Thanks to Andrey and his team, our situation is much better now.Alex C.Alex C. ★★★★★ Milvidskiy Law Group checks all the boxes for what you would want as you enter the complex world of irrevocable trusts. Mr Milvidskiy's exceptional listening skills, clear and concise communication skills, ability to translate complex concepts into simple examples/illustrations, and his visible commitment to overall 'attention to detail' excellence for himself and his staff has made this experience one I would highly recommend. His staff has excellent follow up, organizational, and communication skills. He also provided his book he wrote to me early on in the process as well as conducted a information rich webinar that acted as a strong foundation that quickly got us on the same page across many dimensions. As the trustee for my parents trust, I feel my parents and I are fully supported by this excellent law firm as we move forward with any ongoing management of the trust. Big thank you to the team at Milvidskiy Law Group.Christopher S.Christopher S. ★★★★★ They have been much more than a law firm. They held my hand. Andrey and his team helped me navigate the world of elder care for my mother who suffers from Alzheimer’s. They guided me through Medicaid and other issues most people are not familiar with. I would like to thank the attorney and his team for your patience and for compassion.Tory BTory B ★★★★★ Andrey helped me with my family's estate planning. He is very knowledgeable, respectful, was very professional throughout the entire process. I am very pleased with his services .Thank you.Irina MIrina M ★★★★★ My aunt used the services of Milvidskiy firm, and it was an amazing experience. Everyone is very professional and not trying to sell you a service, but rather help you to find a right solution.Ada AAda A ★★★★★ Milvidskiy law group is the best. the ladies that work there are alway very helpful. also the lawyers and their assistance are amazing. i would highly recommend this law firm.Sal B.Sal B. ★★★★★ We are new clients of the Milvidskiy Law Group PC.Mr. Milvidskiy and staff are wonderful. They listen to us regarding our Family Estate Plan., he reviews our Plan and where he feels important and necessary, he gives his input. When we have any questions or concern, he explains the answers to ue, patiently. We are happy with their professional services.William T.William T. ★★★★★ Estate Planning can be a complicated and technical endeavor for most individuals like myself and my wife. In additon, finding a competent Estate Planner can be equally difficult. However from the outset we were quickly assured that we had selected the right firm to handle all our Estate needs. Our attorney,Andre, and his assistant, Pamela, emphasized, that in order for a plan to be successful, it must be understood in it's entirerty and it needs to meet all the individual concerns of the client. In that vein technical aspects were explained in laymans terms and all our questions were not only encourgaged but answered fully to our satisfaction. We've had experiences with other law firms but by far we found the Milvidskiy Law Group to be Professional, Trustworthy, Experienced In the Law and Genuinely interested in the welfare of their clients. A1 in our book!!! Sal & Theresa MinieriSal M.Sal M. ★★★★★ I cannot write enough good things about this firm. They were prompt and effective in resolving my issue. Their team is the best. They get work done and at a very reasonable cost.Olga I.Olga I. ★★★★★ My husband and I couldn't be happier with the services provided by Andrey Milvidskiy and his associate, Pamela. We were looking for an attorney that we could relate to in formulating our Estate Plan to preserve our assets for which we’ve worked hard all of our lives. Having been a paralegal for over 20 years, I researched “elder care” attorneys for several months before we consulted with Andrey. Andrey provided guidance throughout the process of developing our Estate Plan, which put us at complete ease. His expertise in the field of elder law and estate planning coupled with his business and financial sense is unparalleled. I can’t recommend this law firm highly enough.Ron & Evelyn ColvinHackensackSeaside Q.Seaside Q. ★★★★★ Several years after the Law Group prepared my Will and other documents, I contacted them with several questions. I was please to find that they were ready and willing to answer all my questions and to reassure me that, since there were no changes in my situation, there was no need to update any of the documents. I was also please to learn that will be happy to answer any questions I may have in the future.George T.George T. ★★★★★ My wife and I considered other attorneys and even met some of them. We decided to use the Milvidskiy Law Group after our initial meeting. Everyone we spoke to our met with, was courteous, friendly, caring, and professional, from the receptionist to Mr Milvidskiy. We recommend you speak to or meet with this firm before making your decision on which estate planning attorney to use.Randy K.Randy K. ★★★★★ I was very impressed with the expertise of their attorneys and excellent customer service. It’s very rare these days to come across such compassionate people. Even though I realized how busy they were, every time I called, they made me feel like my family and I were the most important. They went above and beyond to help my family. Their professional and friendly staff was always there to help and answer my questions, which I had many, and I was never asked to pay a penny more for all the extra time I took. I wholeheartedly recommend this firm to anyone in need of an elder law attorney, whether for themselves or their parents.Alina U.Alina U. ★★★★★ Great experience great lawyers if you have a trust fund to set up these are the lawyers to see very satisfiedJerry H.Jerry H. ★★★★★ We were very impressed with the serviced we received from the Milvidskiy Firm. They were responsive and very professional. They delivered as promised. We highly recommend them! Their fees are quite reasonable.Rose F.Rose F. ★★★★★ Mr. Milvidskiy and his staff were extremely knowledgeable and helpful insetting up our complicated estate plan. They were always available toanswer all our questions and were very accommodating in meeting with us. I recommend them highly.Ellen G.Ellen G. ★★★★★ The Milvidskiy team was incredible and I am so grateful for their timeliness, compassion, and patience during such a difficult time for our family. During our time at the hospital, many people talked to us instead of speaking with us, however, their legal team was the exception. I am very impressed with how they navigated the tense situation with some of our family members and felt that their empathy was heartwarming. I will be forever grateful for their help ensuring our grandfather's wishes were listened to and will be honored.Thomas B.Thomas B. ★★★★★ I want to share my story or experience with Milvidskiy Law Group. A representative of the Law Group was ask to speak at my Church about Elder Law and how it applies to those of us that is of a certain age getting up in life. I was blown away about what I heard and make a decision to look in further more regarding what will happen to me if I’m in a position during illness or allocating personal possessions and can’t make a decision for myself. If you are elderly or have elderly parents I urge you to visit this Milvidskiy Law Firm because you will not regret what a clear and concise explanations of all your questions.It’s important to have plans in place and makes your wishes clear when you are not in a position to make decisions to avoid family feuds.My experience with everyone at this Law Firm was Professional, courteous, kind , experience and willing to answer all my questions that was pose to them. Finally I just want to say that I have peace in the decision I have made , knowing I have everything in place now.Anne FAnne F.Anne F. ★★★★★ I had a wonderful experience dealing with them, they are extremely professional and friendly. They are the best in business and helped me get the best possible solution. I recommend them without any reservation.Hashmeet K.Hashmeet K. ★★★★★ Very knowledgeable team, asking about all your needs and concerning questions. Mr. Milvidesky has assembled the best team of professionals to address the most complicated issues in favor of their clints. Thanks you all.Harendra G.Harendra G. ★★★★★ Mr.Mildviskiy went into details in term of our situation and our needs and designed the will which seemed best for our case.The follow up and additional questions were promptly answered and clarified.No boiler plate answers.Yves M.Yves M. ★★★★★ My husband and I met with Mr. Milvidskiy yesterday at his Paramus, NJ office after listening to his online webinar regarding estate planning. First, I must say that prior to the meeting I spoke with two of his assistants to prepare and be able to efficiently address our concerns. Both were pleasant, set a very professional tone and assured me that this complementary meeting had no strings attached. Since it it unusual for us to meet about such important matters with a person we found on the internet, we wanted to proceed cautiously.Well, this was my takeaway. Mr. Milvidskiy is a knowledgeable attorney who specializes in the complexities of estate planning and elder law in at least NJ and NY. He is a consummate professional and did not in any way try to "sell" us his services. In fact, he told us we didn't need him at this point, gave us a couple of useful ideas, and told us we were welcome to contact him in the future should our circumstances change.We were very happy to have met him, and would pass his name on to our daughter, should she ever need his counsel, as our heir. IMO, there is no substitute for having a knowledgeable person of integrity to turn to in planning important quality of life decisions. We would recommend him highly, with confidence.Steve B.Steve B. ★★★★★ My experience with the Milvidskiy Law Group was a positive one. They were always available to answer any of my questions. If I did have to leave a message or email a question/concern they would always respond back in a reasonable amount of time. I would recommend this Law group!Teresa W.Teresa W.js_loader

Schedule Your Free Discovery Phone Call

Select a day and time to speak with a member of our team to determine if estate planning is right for you. There is no cost or obligation. We will discuss if our firm is the right fit for you and your family to work on your estate planning needs.

Schedule Your Free Discovery Phone Call

Select a day and time to speak with a member of our team to determine if estate planning is right for you. We will discuss if our firm is the right fit for you and your family to work on your estate planning needs.