Nursing homes and assisted living facilities can be very expensive, but there are ways to make your long-term care dollars stretch.  There are three primary methods of paying for nursing homes or assisted living facilities: 

   1) Private-paying with one's own  dollars;  

   2) Using insurance that covers some  or all of the cost of long-term care and  

   3) Need-Based Government Benefits, i.e. VA Benefits and the Medicaid-Title 19 program.   

Private-paying for care often means total indigence.  The average cost of a semi-private room in a skilled/intermediate long-term care facility in Connecticut is $12,800.00 per month or $172,600.00 per year. In Fairfield County, it is much higher.  Some studies put it at $15,600 per month or $187,400.00 per year. Assisted living facilities are less than the cost of nursing homes, but still too much for many to pay without outliving their savings.  Many people spend all of their savings in nursing homes and then have nothing left.  Not a very good option!  

 Long-term care insurance works for some but most people considering nursing home care do not have long-term care insurance and either cannot qualify for the policies or cannot afford the premiums.  Long-term care insurance is therefore often not an option.  

 Need Based Government Benefits - This leaves Veteran's Benefits and the Medicaid-Title 19 program.  In CT, Medicaid pays for almost all nursing homes including the finest of facilities (you sometimes need to know the tricks to getting in!) and Medicaid increasingly covers assisted living facilities as well.  But in order to qualify for Medicaid, applicants must have less than $1,600.00 in assets and be below certain levels of income.   

How can Elder Law Attorney Christopher Greenwood help: Among other services which enhance quality of life, Elder Law Attorney Christopher Greenwood helps people to ethically and legally convert countable savings to non-countable savings, so that Elder Law clients can keep their savings and still qualify for Medicaid.  This is done not out of greed but out of necessity, so that the Elder Law client is not left indigent at the cost of long-term care.  In the words of one court, "No agency of the government has any right to complain about the fact that middle-class people confronted with desperate circumstances, choose to do Medicaid asset protection planning, when it is the government itself which has established the rule that poverty is a prerequisite to the receipt of government assistance, in the defraying of the costs of ruinously expensive, but absolutely essential medical treatment."   

Want more information  Call 203-375-4040 and arrange a meeting or go online to at www.GreenwoodElderLaw.com.  Our offices are located 799 Silver Lane, Trumbull, CT.