I want to know if buy my mothers home for $1.00 is legal?

My mom is 77 and my dad died last year. they receive Medicaid and medicare. My mother is now looking at possibly loosing her estate after she passes. Can i buy her proper/assets for one dollar to save them from the state collecting them when she passes? She didn’t know this could happen until I went to the Medicaid appt. with her and know we are trying to figure out what to do.Thanks,Laura

Asked on July 2, 2009 under Real Estate Law, Ohio

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

I am not admitted in Ohio and I think that you should seek help from an attorney who specializes in Elder Law in your area for help on your specific case.  You can look here at attorneypages.com for starters.  However, generally, the following seem to be applicable in Ohio:

"Medicaid Gifting Rules

 
The "Lookback Period" vs. the "Ineligibility Period"

The look back period begins on the date the individual is both institutionalized and applies for Ohio Medicaid assistance.

The look back period currently is five years. (See "New Federal Medicaid Changes")

A transfer made outside the look back period is not counted against the institutionalized person.

A transfer made within the look back period is either "proper" or "improper", depending on whether the transfer was made to a qualified person, such as a spouse or dependent, and depending on the purpose of the transfer.

An improper transfer is assigned a penalty of time where the institutionalized spouse is ineligible for Ohio Medicaid. This is the "ineligibility period".

The ineligibility period is determined by dividing the amount of the transfer by a divestment penalty divisor.

Trap for the unwary: The penalty period begins on the date the individual is otherwise eligible for Medicaid but for the transfer(s), meaning once an unmarried individual is otherwise under $1,500, or once the assets of the married couple are reduced below their resource allowance.

A "sale" for less than full market value is a gift to the extent full value was not received in return."
Good luck.

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

I am not admitted in Ohio and I think that you should seek help from an attorney who specializes in Elder Law in your area for help on your specific case.  You can look here at attorneypages.com for starters.  However, generally, the following seem to be applicable in Ohio:

"Medicaid Gifting Rules

 
The "Lookback Period" vs. the "Ineligibility Period"

The look back period begins on the date the individual is both institutionalized and applies for Ohio Medicaid assistance.

The look back period currently is five years. (See "New Federal Medicaid Changes")

A transfer made outside the look back period is not counted against the institutionalized person.

A transfer made within the look back period is either "proper" or "improper", depending on whether the transfer was made to a qualified person, such as a spouse or dependent, and depending on the purpose of the transfer.

An improper transfer is assigned a penalty of time where the institutionalized spouse is ineligible for Ohio Medicaid. This is the "ineligibility period".

The ineligibility period is determined by dividing the amount of the transfer by a divestment penalty divisor.

Trap for the unwary: The penalty period begins on the date the individual is otherwise eligible for Medicaid but for the transfer(s), meaning once an unmarried individual is otherwise under $1,500, or once the assets of the married couple are reduced below their resource allowance.

A "sale" for less than full market value is a gift to the extent full value was not received in return."
Good luck.

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