As elder law attorneys, we keep our eye out for the annual long-term care cost survey that is conducted by Genworth Financial. They have released their 2021 figures recently, and we will look at the implications in this post.
About 70 percent of seniors will need some form of living assistance, and some of these folks will be able to receive the care that they need in their own homes. Family members and friends step up to provide unpaid assistance in some cases, but in others, professional help is needed.
In 2021, the median annual charge for a home health aide in Cincinnati was $61,776, which was a 5.88 percent increase over the previous year. More than half of people that receive paid care incur bills for more than a year, and 13 percent require professional assistance for more than five years.
Will Medicare Help?
Medicare was established to address the health care needs of senior citizens. A logical person would assume that a program that exists to serve this purpose would cover a form of care that most senior citizens will need.
Unfortunately, logic does not hold sway in this instance. Medicare does not pay for in-home care, and it will not cover a stay in a nursing home.
Ohio Home Care Waiver
Elder law professionals help seniors address long-term care costs that can have devastating consequences. The Ohio Home Care Waiver is a government program that falls under the Medicaid umbrella, and it will pay for in-home care if you can gain eligibility.
Since Medicaid is only available to people with very limited financial resources, you cannot qualify if you have more than $2000 in countable assets. The “countable” part is key, because some assets don’t count, and there are allowances for a healthy spouse.
A home is not a countable asset for Medicaid eligibility purposes, but there is an estate recovery mandate. If you qualify for Medicare or the Home Care Waiver as a homeowner, the program can place a lien on the property after your death if you were the direct owner.
Medicaid Caregiver Child Exemption
In some instances, an adult child will act as a live-in caretaker for a parent. If the level of care that is given is allowing the elder to live outside of a nursing home, ownership of the home could potentially be transferred to the child under the Medicaid caregiver child exemption.
However, there is a time stipulation. This exemption is only available to caregiver children that provided the care for at least two years.
Aging in Place Modifications
Remaining in your own home in familiar surroundings can be comforting if you have an in-home health aide or a family member providing the assistance you need. At the same time, outside facilities are modified to make life easier for people with mobility challenges.
You can actually enjoy the best of both worlds if you have your home modified. Aging in place modifications can include the installation of handrails, grab bars, motion sensor lighting, ramps, stair chairs, and door levers instead of knobs, just to name a handful.
The modifications can be custom crafted to suit your needs, and ongoing changes can be made if and when they become necessary.
Schedule an Elder Law Consultation Today!
If you take the right steps in advance, you can prepare yourself for potential long-term care costs to preserve your legacy. We can gain an understanding of your situation and your preferences and help you devise a plan that will provide you with peace of mind.
You can schedule a consultation at our Cincinnati elder law office right now if you give us a call at 513-721-1513. There is also a contact form on this site you can use to send us a message, and if you reach out in this manner, you can expect to receive a prompt response.