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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

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Why is Medicaid different in every state?

Medicaid operates as a Federal program governed at the State level, meaning that the Federal government contributes approximately 50% of the funds utilized while the State is responsible for the other 50%. This hands-off approach gives States the ability to self-govern to a certain degree. Each state sets its own criteria (permitted they stay within the Federal guidelines) for whom is eligible and how they gain eligibility.

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Can I be barred from Medicaid if I just moved into a state?

Medicaid operates as a Federal program governed at the State level, meaning that the Federal government contributes approximately 50% of the funds utilized while the State is responsible for the other 50%. This hands-off approach gives States the ability to self-govern to a certain degree. Each state sets its own criteria (permitted they stay within the Federal guidelines) for whom is eligible and how they gain eligibility.

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Who is covered by Medicaid?

Medicaid is an entitlement program, meaning anyone that meets the eligibility standards can apply for and receive benefits.

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What are the income and resource levels for Medicaid?

Because each State has the ability to set their own standards (provided they aren’t more restrictive than the Federal guidelines), income and assets limitations will vary. Generally speaking, most states have adopted an asset limit of $2,000.00, excluding the patient’s primary residence and one automobile. For your State’s asset limitations, contact your county’s Department of Human Services.

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Will Medicaid pay for my Medicare premiums and deductibles?

If a patient’s income is low enough, they can apply for the Medicare Savings Plan, which will cover part if not all of their Medicare deductibles.

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Can Medicaid place a lien on property or recover against an estate?

In most cases, the patient’s homestead is considered an exempt asset. However, some states can impose a lien on their property. States can also seek recovery from the estates of Medicaid recipients.

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Are adult children responsible for the medical bills of their parents?

No, federal law deems that the State cannot seek repayment from non-spouses. On the other hand, certain states have rules in place that make adult children at least partially responsible for indigent parents.

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Are well spouses legally responsible for Medicaid expenses of a sick spouse?

Although Federal Law will allow states to deem a well spouse’s resources available to the interned patient, this isn’t necessarily a requirement. In certain cases, a State can sue the well spouse for a contribution. In either case, contact your county Department of Human Services to find out what the asset limitations are for well spouses in your state.