No One ever walked up to a nursing home with a satchel and asked to check in. First, it does not work that way and second even people who choose nursing home care go through a vetting process at the nursing home before they can be admitted. People who make the statement that it is a terrible thing for kids to “stick their parents in a home” are those who have no idea of what the real issues are and what the real needs become as we outlive our bodies natural ability to sustain daily activities.
No One has ever walked into our Elder Law Offices and said, “can you find a way to put the old man away and get him out of my house.” This is never happened in my experience. What has happened is that people who have just come from a hospital, or rehab facility, call to make an appointment because they have just realized that mom cannot possibly be cared for adequately at home and that she may be in real danger if something isn’t done right away. Often they have just been told that they need to come up with $4,000 to $6,000 for the first month!
Years ago, the kids, who are struggling with guilt, and anxiety, and feelings of separation and desperation were told that there was a program that would pay for all the charges in excess of mom’s social security payment, which the nursing home would take most of. They were also told that they could see an elder law attorney to make sure that mom could qualify without unnecessary spend down and without losing everything after mom’s death to Medicaid estate recovery. All too often now, the kids are simply given a one page form that covers the disclosure, or they are told the nursing home can apply for them without all the “fuss” of having a lawyer actually protect the family farm from being lost. The simple truth is that most of the time the nursing home makes more money per bed day from private pay, before Medicaid kicks in, and the nursing home doesn’t care about estate recovery. Everyone facing the Nursing Home challenge should be armed with expertise. It’s a modern problem.
This article is written by an attorney at Wyatt & Mirabella, PC. Always consult an attorney before making any legal decisions. To make an appointment today for a free consultation, please click here to contact us.