Tag Archives: nursing
By: Benjamin A. Schock, Attorney at Law. Macomb County, Michigan. The Unites States Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky found that a woman who was contractually bound through a nursing home admissions agreement to apply for Medicaid benefits on behalf of her husband’s and who failed to do so cannot discharge the debt owed to the nursing home through an individual bankruptcy. In re Plybon (U.S. Bankr. E.D. Ky., No. 11–10146, March 9, 2012). When Glenna Plybon admitted her husband to a nursing home, she signed the admissions agreement for said facility as the responsible party. (Simasko Law Offices recommends that the individual signing said agreement indicates that they are signing said agreement under a color of authority such as a power of attorney to help prevent individual liability) The admissions agreement stated that Mrs. Plybon was required to pay a co-insurance amount and apply for Medicaid benefits on Mr. Plybon’s behalf. Mrs. Plybon applied for Medicaid on behalf of her husband, but did not provide all the information required to process the application, so Mr. Plybon’s Medicaid application was denied. While the application was pending, Mrs. Plybon failed to make any payments to the nursing home and the nursing home discharged her husband. The nursing home sued Mrs. Plybon for the outstanding balance on Mr. Plybon’s bill. When Mrs. Plybon filed for bankruptcy, the nursing home argued the debt was non-dischargeable. Under bankruptcy law, a debt is non-dischargeable if it is incurred by fraud or defalcation (the willful neglect of one’s duty). The U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky held in this instance that the nursing home debt is non-dischargeable. The court ruled that Mrs. Plybon was contractually bound by the admission agreement to apply for Medicaid on Mr. Plybon’s behalf and her “failure to obtain the Medicaid benefits and the subsequent failure to meet the financial obligations for Mr. Plybon’s care were a breach of her obligations under the admissions agreement as the party responsible for Mr. Plybon’s financial assets and liabilities.”
By: James M. Simasko, Attorney at Law. Mt. Clemens, MI. I was asked this very question not too long ago. My answer was not always, but you should always consult with a qualified elder law attorney who specializes in Medicaid Law, which is what the attorneys at Simasko Law Offices. A social worker at a nursing home may be available to give the resident assistance in preparing the application and applying for Medicaid. They will probably know a lot about the program, but maybe not the particular rule that applies to your situation, or the newest changes in the Medicaid Law (Medicaid Laws change frequently). Further, the social worker may not be interested in preserving your family’s wealth or assuring the residents spouse is taken care of. They may not take the time to learn the family dynamics, and you could miss out on significant planning options that could affect the family’s future.
By: Patrick M. Simasko, Attorney at Law. Macomb County, Michigan. If you have a loved one in a nursing home, it is quite common for the nursing home to demand a security deposit. Many Medicaid workers attempt to treat this security deposit as an asset and if it would put you over the asset limit, you have to immediately assign the security deposit to the nursing home for payment of the first months’ rent. However, recent DHS rulings have held that the security deposit is an unavailable asset because the security deposit is out of your control because you have no access to it until after your Medicaid application is approved and is returned to the family. At that point, it becomes available and a countable asset and must be spent down.