People are living longer lives today than in generations past. Because of this, long term health care is quickly becoming an important part of estate planning. While long term care insurance is something that can help preserve your assets, it may not always be a feasible option.

For those who cannot purchase long term care insurance, the next best option is Medicaid planning. Even this has its drawbacks however. In certain situations, once you pass Medicaid will attempt to recover their payments from your estate. Keep reading for more information on Medicaid estate recovery.

What is the Medicaid estate recovery?

As found on Medicaid’s website, estate recovery refers to the program’s ability to recover payments made on behalf of the person enrolled in Medicaid from their estate. The following types of payments are eligible for estate recovery and apply to enrollees 55 or older.

  • Payments to nursing facilities
  • Payments for home services
  • Payments for community-based services
  • Payments to hospitals
  • Payments for prescriptions

Are there exceptions to Medicaid estate recovery?

It is no secret that long term health care is expensive and Medicaid estate recovery could quickly drain your estate once you pass. Fortunately, certain situations prevent Medicaid from recovering payments from your estate. If your spouse survives you, for example, the estate will transfer to your spouse and will not be eligible for estate recovery. Additionally, if you have a blind or disabled child or a child under 21 who survives you, your estate will be ineligible for recovery.

Planning for Medicaid and protecting your assets is an important part of estate planning. Be sure to start planning as soon as possible.