To determine whether or not you are eligible to receive Ohio Medicaid support, you first have to verify the full value of your assets. Having too many assets affect your ability to qualify for Ohio Medicaid assistance because of a maximum threshold amount allowed.
In a marital case, the state Medicaid guidelines take into consideration both husband and wife's assets as combined income and not his or her income as individuals. One of the biggest points of bewilderment for families is that they believe assets owned in one spouses name should not affect the other spouse.
Like I mentioned, this is not how the Ohio Medicaid department rules look at it.
In essence, all the assets are dumped into one bucket and labeled as joint assets on the outside of the bucket. For example, Ohio Medicaid places assets in 3 categories and they are as follows:
1. Exempt Assets: $2000 in cash, the primary home, 1 car, personal property, funeral/burial contracts, IRA's well spouse)up to $1500 in cash value life insurance
2. Unavailable Assets: an interest in someone's estate or real estate that cannot be sold
3. Countable Assets: cash, CD's, stocks, bonds, mutual funds, IRA's, 401(k), 403(b), tax-deferred annuities, 2nd car, buildings or land owned.
So looking at the list above, the well spouse is allowed to begin pulling assets out of the bucket like: the primary home and 1 car. Unfortunately, Ohio Medicaid guidelines place a cap on the total amount the well spouse can retrieve.
For example, in addition to the home and automobile, you are also entitled to keep an additional 50% of all assets up to $109,560. For most middle income families it doesn't take a lot of effort to pull out cash, CD's, and mutual funds totaling $109,560.
And if you have more than $109,560 then you will not qualify for the Ohio Medicaid assistance. Without knowing the rules and applying proper asset protection strategies, the well spouse would be forced to spend down all remaining assets greater than $109,500.
One important thing to remember though…any strategy works best if planning is concluded before a loved experiences a long term care crisis. However, even if a loved one is already living in a nursing home, it's not beyond the scope of possible to still protect 1/2 to 2/3 thirds of the total assets.