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Significant changes in New York’s Medicaid law, relating to eligibility for home care benefits, are now expected to take effect as of October 1, 2022. The new rules impose a 30-month lookback period, in which all financial transactions made during this time are reviewed to determine eligibility. If any uncompensated transfers (gifts) are found during the lookback, there will be a penalty imposed. The penalty translates to a period of time in which the applicant is ineligible for Medicaid home care benefits.
Under current law, there is no lookback or penalty period for Medicaid home care benefits, which provide aides in the home for an eligible person. This differs from Medicaid nursing home benefits, which requires a five-year lookback period to qualify for benefits.
The new law was enacted in New York in 2020 but has been stayed because of the federal COVID-19 public health emergency. The federal emergency has been extended to mid-July 2022, and any pending changes in Medicaid law will be implemented October 1, 2022.
If you, or a member of your family, are considering applying for Medicaid home care benefits, you should apply for those benefits before the new law takes effect. This means that any transfers/gifts of excess funds or resources to meet the Medicaid eligibility limits should be completed before September 1, 2022.
Please contact our firm, Kommer Bave & Ciccone LLP at (914) 633-7400 to arrange for a consultation if you would like to learn more about this change in eligibility law, and what you can do to preserve assets and apply for benefits. But act quickly, as the deadline is approaching.
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