My mother has been in a nursing home for the past three years. When she went to the home I had control of her funds through a power of attorney and have spent almost all of about $350,000 on her care. I did also make an investment that she and I had planned before she became incapacitated that did not work out. We lost roughly $80,000 between the two of us. Will this be held against her for Medicaid purposes? And if she has no money other than Social Security and two small retirement payments, what happens?
It probably depends on the investment and the facts. If your mother made an investment that didn’t work out with an independent third party, it should probably not be a problem. But if, for instance, she was investing in a company you were starting, it will look more like a gift to you. In addition, it could depend on the documentation of the investment. If there’s proper paperwork – a stock certificate, for instance – it will be more likely to pass muster with Medicaid. A local elder law attorney who looked at all of the circumstances should be able to provide a more definite answer.
For more on Medicaid’s asset transfer rules, click here.