7. Don’t Prepare Your Own Medicaid Application

This is the 2012 version. Click here for updated 2016 version of this strategy.
Don't fill out your own application. Some people think they can save money on legal fees by preparing their own Medicaid applications. However, the application is a complicated document that most find confusing. Eligibility can often only be won with complex legal and financial planning, to overcome Medicaid obstacles. Even nursing home professionals, who deal with Medicaid on a daily basis, frequently refer prospective residents to an Elder Law firm for this reason.

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Trying to complete your own application can be daunting. If you make mistakes due to unfamiliarity with government regulations, you may compromise or lose your ability to qualify for benefits. Loss or delay of eligibility may ultimately have adevastating financial impact on you. So it's generally not a good idea to handle it yourself. Get professional assistance.

In addition, sometimes there are unusual issues, requiring special handling that only an Elder Law attorney can provide. In one case of this sort, Lamson & Cutner helped a middle-aged, single woman who immigrated to the United States, and was subsequently diagnosed with cancer. She needed chemotherapy, medication, as well as physician and hospital coverage.

We transferred her assets out of her name, and filed a Medicaid application for her. She was approved for a level of benefits that gave her 100% coverage, and allowed her to choose her own doctors. Without the extra attention her case received, it's likely she would only have been covered by an HMO.



25 Strategies to Prevent Financial Ruin from Long-Term Health Care Costs

  1. You can qualify for Medicaid (even if you don’t think so)
  2. The “Wait and See” Approach can Result in Ruinous Health Care Expenses.
  3. Plan for Home Care and Nursing Home Facility Care while You Still Can.
  4. What’s the difference between Medicare and Medicaid?
  5. It’s NOT too Late for Effective Medicaid Planning (even if you think it is)
  6. Why Hire an Elder Law Attorney?
  7. Don’t Prepare Your Own Medicaid Application
  8. Trusts Can Protect Your Home and Your Money!
  9. Special Trusts for Specific Purposes
  10. Protecting Co-op Apartments Require Special Handling
  11. Evaluate Your 401k or IRA Carefully when Planning for Medicaid
  12. Why Take the Lump Sum Option on Your Pension or Retirement Account?
  13. Choose Your Trustee Wisely
  14. Private Annuities can Help Protect Your Assets
  15. Caregiver Agreements Help Achieve Medicaid Eligibility
  16. Keep Your Medicare Insurance
  17. The Durable Power of Attorney
  18. Elder Law and Estate Planning
  19. The Health Care Proxy vs. the Living Will
  20. How to Choose an Elder Law Firm
  21. Streamline Your Financial Affairs and Record Keeping
  22. New York State is More Generous than Other States
  23. Your Attorney can Help Find the Best Care for You
  24. Long-Term Care Insurance Won’t Necessarily Solve the Problem
  25. Compassionate Elder Law Planning Focuses on Your Future Quality-of-Life!
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