Trusts can be used to protect a variety of assets, including real estate and financial assets such as deposit accounts, stocks, bonds, mutual funds, and the like. If you don’t transfer ownership of such assets, Medicaid will require you to use them to pay for your care until they are nearly entirely gone. Trusts are the most prudent way to hold these assets and keep them safe. Once in a trust, they are no longer viewed as resources you can use to pay for care, because legally they no longer belong to you.
Irrevocable Medicaid Trusts are a way to protect your assets while still having the income they generate paid to you. With an Irrevocable Trust you no longer have a right to access the principal in the trust, but its income can support your lifestyle and the trustees can be given discretion to distribute principal to beneficiaries who can use the money to benefit you.
These trusts go beyond helping you to qualify for Medicaid, they also protect your money from exposure to liability to future creditors. They are far more protective than simply transferring your assets to an individual person, such as a child or sibling. If you give your money or property to an individual, legally that money or property is theirs. So if they have an auto accident and are at fault, or they suffer a business failure, or go through a divorce, your money or property could be exposed to loss. Money placed in most trust structures will be much better protected than funds held by individuals.
If you would like to learn more about Medicaid Irrevocable Trusts, you can read about them here. Or, if you’d like to determine if a Medicaid Irrevocable Trust may be of benefit to you, click on Find Your Situation. If you’d like to get in touch right away, you can call our office at 212-447-8690.