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Chris The Lawyer
Chris The Lawyer, Lawyer
Category: New Zealand Law
Satisfied Customers: 14208
Experience:  37 years qualified as a lawyer; LLB, MMgt and FAMINZ.
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A coupe own their joint home. One partner has to go into

Customer Question

A coupe own their joint home. One partner has to go into care - his superan goes to the home for his care - The home wants the stay home partner to provide her bank statements along with the patients. Can the home put a caveat over the home to realise half the value when the patient dies? The home is only worth 200K .
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: New Zealand Law
Expert:  Chris The Lawyer replied 10 months ago.

Asset limits for Social Welfare financial means assessment

The principle underpinning social welfare law is that people should not receive assistance from the state when they have the resources to support themselves.

The Ministry of Social Development (MSD) assesses whether a person aged 65 or over is eligible for a residential care subsidy on the basis of the value of his or her assets and financial means.

The amount of the increase in the applicable asset value thresholds is inflation-adjusted in accordance with the Consumer Price Index.

The thresholds for the year 1 July 2015 to 30 June 2016 are set at two different levels. Threshold A is $218,598.00 and applies to every resident assessed as requiring care: (a) who has no spouse or partner; or (b) whose spouse or partner is also a resident assessed as requiring care; or (c) whose spouse or partner is not a resident assessed as requiring care but who has elected to have Threshold A apply to him or her rather than Threshold B. Threshold B is $119,709.00 and applies to every resident assessed as requiring care: (a) whose spouse or partner is not a resident assessed as requiring care; and (b) who has not elected to have Threshold A apply to him or her. The thresholds represent value of assets. Certain assets are exempt: household furniture and personal belongings, up to $10,000.00 of pre-paid funeral expenses, and, if Option B is elected, the home and car.

Assets not included in the assessment are personal effects and an allowance of $10,000.00 for pre-paid funeral expenses.

So if the value of the home is under this amount as you describe then the payments dont need to come from his share. You need to provide the financial information including the last valuation to show this.

Expert:  Chris The Lawyer replied 10 months ago.

For the purposes of a financial means assessment, the Act defines ‘assets’ as realisable assets of the person and his or her spouse. There is an inclusive definition of ‘assets’ in Part 2 of Schedule 27 of the Act.

Examples of assets that may be considered in the asset test include:

  • the value of property
  • cash or savings
  • investments or shares
  • leisure boats
  • caravans and campervans
  • investment properties
  • licence to occupy contracts
  • the value of assets gifted (gifts given away)
  • loans made to other people (including family trusts).

A person’s home (principal residence) is generally included in the asset test if they do not have a partner (spouse); or both the person and their partner (spouse) are in long-term residential care; or a person’s partner is in long-term residential care, but has chosen to have their assets assessed against the higher asset threshold (Asset Threshold A).

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