Florida Medicaid Attorney

Each year, thousands of Florida residents enter nursing homes and other long-term care facilities. Unfortunately, nursing home care is not cheap. According to the Florida Health Care Association, the median annual cost of a semi-private room in a nursing home is $87,600—nearly $7,300 every month. Many Florida senior citizens simply cannot afford such care without help. Understanding Medicaid Law, however, can greatly help to offset these costs.

Understanding Medicaid Eligibility

Medicaid is a joint federal-state program that assists low-income individuals in paying for health care. This includes nursing home and long-term care. Unlike Medicare, which covers most health care costs for individuals 65 and older, Medicaid is strictly means tested. In other words, your ability to qualify for Medicaid depends on the net worth of your assets and income.


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The exact income standards for Medicaid change from year-to-year and vary in each state, but as of January 1, 2016, an applicant’s gross monthly income cannot exceed $2,199. If the applicant is married, and his or her spouse is not applying for Medicaid as well, then the spouse’s income is not counted towards this limit. In fact, if the spouse’s income is below a certain threshold, some of the applicant’s income may be “diverted” to the spouse so that it does not count against the applicant’s limit.

Medicaid also looks at a person’s assets in determining eligibility. The applicant’s total assets generally cannot exceed $2,000. That may not seem like much, but in fact an applicant may have many assets that do not count towards this limit. For example, if the applicant owns a home where with a spouse or dependents, the equity in the property (up to $552,000) is not counted as an asset for Medicaid purposes. Even if the applicant is single and lives alone, this homestead exemption may still be available if the applicant “intends to or can reasonably be expected to return to the home.”

If and when a person does qualify for Medicaid, most of that person’s income will likely be distributed to help pay for nursing home care. Florida only permits Medicaid recipients to keep a small portion of their income–$105 per month—as a “personal needs allowance.” This is expected to cover any personal care items, such as clothing and toiletries, not paid for by Medicaid.

Why Do I Need a Florida Medicaid Attorney?

You might wonder why you need a Florida Medicaid attorney. In addition to the complexity of Florida’s Medicaid rules—the description above only provides a brief summary. Residents often face long waiting lists to get into nursing home and other long-term care facilities. Time is therefore of the essence when dealing with state Medicaid officials.

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A Florida Medicaid attorney can also help protect an applicant’s assets. Not only does Medicaid enforce strict limits on an applicant’s assets, those assets they do retain may be subject to seizure after a person’s death as “reimbursement” to Medicaid. Careful legal planning can often help protect a person’s assets for the benefit of his or her family and heirs.

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The Law Office of K. Hunter Goff, P.A. has the experience and knowledge to assist Medicaid applicants and their families in dealing with the system. The prospect of entering a nursing home or assisted living facility is often overwhelming. There is no need to deal with the legal side of the process alone. Contact K. Hunter Goff today at (407) 898-8225 to speak with a Florida Medicaid attorney right away.

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