Signing an Admissions Agreement on Behalf of Another (Part 1)
As I have written about often recently, the State has raised the bar significantly in terms of what an applicant needs to produce and explain in order to qualify for Medicaid. The level of increased scrutiny leads to many more failed applications and reapplications than even a few years ago. If you aren’t prepared for the intensity of the process, it can lead to lost benefits. In many of those cases, especially when the applicant is single, there aren’t any assets to pay the facility if Medicaid won’t cover the time period you expected it would.
I tell clients that there is a real risk for long term care facilities with respect to taking in residents where Medicaid is anticipated at some point. I have seen scenarios over the years in which 5 and 6 figure long term care bills are unpaid because there is no source of private payment and Medicaid could not be approved.
Which is why paying close attention to what is in the facility admissions agreement before you sign it is so important. Since more often than not this agreement will be signed by someone other than the resident him/herself – usually by another family member – the question to be asked is, “what is my personal responsibility if I sign an agreement on behalf of another?”
We’ll cover that next week.