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RayAnswers
RayAnswers, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 38912
Experience:  30 years as a family law lawyer .
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My mother is in a nursing home in New York City, and has

Customer Question

My mother is in a nursing home in New York City, and has medicaid. She has been in a nursing home for 2.5 years. In terms of the monies that she has in her account, are there any limitations in terms of how this money is spent? Can it be for services related to her needs? Can a check be drawn from her account directly to someone who is providing her services, for example extra care. We want to hire a part time home health care companion, privately. Is this allowed?
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  RayAnswers replied 11 months ago.
Hi and welcome to JA.Ray here to help you . It would be legal for her to hire and pay for a private caregiver.You may want to make sure it is ok with the nursing home.Any funds expended for her own care are appropriate under medicaid in NY.She benefits and it is a legitimate expense here. I do not see any problems with medicaid here.You can use her funds for her care in this situation.It helps her quality of life here and you should do it if you are able. I appreciate the chance to help you today and wish her and you the best.Thanks again.
Customer: replied 11 months ago.
May I ask, are you able to practice family law in New York? If so, what are your rates for a phone call? Thank you! Robert
Expert:  RayAnswers replied 11 months ago.
Robert I am not able to represent folks off site.I can offer you extended online chat and will send you an offer thanks.
Expert:  RayAnswers replied 11 months ago.
If you can positive rate it is much appreciated and will do extended chat.
Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Hi Ray, before agreeing to a consultation, my sister and I need to know if you are able to practice law in New York. Thanks, Robert
Expert:  RayAnswers replied 11 months ago.
Robert no I am a Texas elder law specialist,I am familiar with NY medicaid law.Medicaid is a federal program it is regulated by the feds and has similar rules through out the US. What follow up do you have be happy to answer.
Expert:  RayAnswers replied 11 months ago.
If you have any issues here with the facility and bringing in a sitter or nurse you can contact the NY ombudsman.They represent all residents including your mother.They can help with care issues, anything really that pertains to your mother.Its free they are state paid . ***** *****New York State Ombudsman1-***-***-****
Expert:  RayAnswers replied 11 months ago.
http://www.ltcombudsman.ny.gov/ Your problem here is not paying her from private funds, the facilities sometimes balk because they fear it shows they aren't providing proper care.But i understand why you want the extra care for her.It offers here protection and a better quality of life.
Expert:  RayAnswers replied 11 months ago.
I will be her all night if you have more follow up.I have 30 years or so in elder law and medicaid.I am also familiar with skilled nursing issues and long term care overall.
Expert:  RayAnswers replied 11 months ago.
More information here about NY and long term care. https://www.health.ny.gov/facilities/nursing/select_nh/select_nh.htm
Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Thank you, Ray. Is it possible that New York law in relationship to Medicaid will have any different rules/regulations than Texas that you aren't familiar with?
Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Ray I have a more in-depth question, but this question is about New York law pertaining to medicaid. If you are confident that you can answer a New York related question to medicaid, then I would be happy to schedule a phone consultation. Let me know. Thanks, Robert
Expert:  RayAnswers replied 11 months ago.
No it would not, please just ask it be happy here to respond.
Customer: replied 11 months ago.
I am on a conference call till 9:00 PM-9:30 PM EST. But I'd prefer to speak to you about the issue. I'll invest the $50, but when would be a good time for us to speak?
Expert:  RayAnswers replied 11 months ago.
I am not set up for phone calls .I am usually online until 11 eastern and then in the am.If I miss you reply in the am.I will answer any questions you have it if you post them when you get time.lt is not a problem.
Expert:  RayAnswers replied 11 months ago.
I sent you an offer for unlimited online chat again answer all the questions you have here, ask away.
Customer: replied 11 months ago.
It's a topic I'd prefer to speak with you by phone. I did get an offer to chat with you by phone. Is that via telephone?
Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Never mind, I just realized what it was. Is this area confidential and private?
Expert:  RayAnswers replied 11 months ago.
I'll opt out here and you can seek an expert by phone.
Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Ok, Ray, thank you!
Expert:  RayAnswers replied 11 months ago.
.
Expert:  RayAnswers replied 11 months ago.
Since nobody picked this up if you post your questions I will be happy to answer here.
Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Our mom has been on New York City Medicaid for about 10 years and was living at home until 2 1/2 years ago when she entered a nursing home. She now resides permanently in the nursing home.For over 10 years we have been sending a "spend down" of $550 based on the $1,550 that our mother receives from Social Security to the Home Health Agency that had been overseeing her care. Now that she is in a nursing home, we were told to continue to send $550 to the Home Health Agency. This amount is then forwarded on to Medicaid.A bookkeeper at the nursing home told us that he does not think that our mother is permitted to keep $1,000 a month in Social Security since she has few expenses. She has no spouse, no longer lives at home and has no expenses. He said that all she may keep is $50.00. The bookkeeper said that Medicaid must have made a mistake in allowing our mom to keep so much money each month. (We do pay supplemental health insurance of $200 a month as well as purchase clothing, a burial plot and misc. items with her money. We keep receipts for all purchases for her.)I do not know if this bookkeeper is correct and I really do hesitate to bring this issue to Medicaid. In years past I have spent untold hours organizing and maintaining my mother's records with complete accuracy and transparency. I have no intention of intentionally becoming involved with the Medicaid bureaucracy.We would like to hire a part-time companion for my mother but I was told by this bookkeeper at the nursing home that I can write checks on my mother's behalf only to myself, to Empire Blue Cross, or to the Home Health Agency. I have power of attorney as well as a joint checking account with my mother. I know that a person on medicaid is not allowed to have more than $14,500 and I was hoping that paying a companion from the joint checking account would be a good way to spend some of her money since she isn't allowed to have more than $14,500 in the account or she will lose her Medicaid eligibility. I would like to be able to write a check directly to the companion from the joint account but I don't know if I can do this.Based on this information, I am asking you two questions:I wonder if you know whether a person in a nursing home who has Medicaid can keep more than $50.00 a month from Social Security.I also wonder whether I can write a check from my mother's account to a companion for her? I would be writing checks in the amount of about $600 a month.
Expert:  RayAnswers replied 11 months ago.
Here I agree social security likely made a mistake.The funds should go to nursing home for her care since there is no other spouse.You can spend down the money here the risk is nursing home wants the funds back.Honestly I would make appointment with her ME eligibility worker and sort through this.Likely she owes the home these funds.I would do that before hiring a caregiver.I would do this now as she has accumulated excess funds and it needs to be corrected. I think once you resolve this with state ME worker then you know if you can afford a caregiver.I think long term you will sleep better at night here knowing there is no huge repayment due to nursing home.And the Ombudsman can help you with this and set up meeting here with ME worker, nursing home, ombudsman, and you to resolve it. Thanks for your patience let me know if you have more follow up.
Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Thank you, Ray. I appreciate your response.
Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Once we have this sorted out, do you know if we can write a check directly to the aide from that account? Thank you!
Expert:  RayAnswers replied 11 months ago.
Yes it is for private pay nurse it would not be a problem.
Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Only a private pay nurse, what about a private pay home health aide?
Expert:  RayAnswers replied 11 months ago.
That would be acceptable here too it is for her personal benefit and care.