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Hooper Law Office,LLC Estate Planning Blog

Monday, October 12, 2015

Which assets are considered exempt assets?

The following assets are considered exempt:

  • Your home;
  • Your car;
  • Your personal belongings; and
  • A small number of other types of assets. 

While laws vary from state to state, generally your personal residence is an exempt asset for purposes of Medicaid eligibility.  However, technical rules exist pertaining to how much of your home’s value is exempt.  In order to keep your home classified as exempt, it is advisable to express your intent to return to your home after the nursing home stay.

If you are single, your state may be permitted to place a lien on your home (under certain circumstances) that will be enforced when the house is sold.  Although there are legal ways to require the state to release its lien, or at the least to minimize it, a thorough knowledge of the Medicaid rules is essential.

One care is exempt.  Any additional vehicles will be treated as non-exempt.

In determining your Medicaid eligibility, most states typically ignore personal belongings.  The exception is if your personal belongings have an unusually high value.  So unless you have an original Picasso hanging on the wall, or some other valuable artwork or collection, your personal belongings are probably safe.

A small number of other assets are also not subject to the spend down requirements.  These include prepaid burial plans and a small amount of life insurance.  Funeral or burial assets may be of different types.  Some types are subject to limitations.


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