Implementation of Medicaid Look-back and Transfer Penalty assessed for Community Based Home Care Services Delayed

Until now, New Yorkers could almost instantly qualify for Medicaid Home Care services by transferring assets one month and being considered financially eligible for Medicaid Home Care services the following month. This made Medicaid Home Care services a very attractive alternative for New York residents in need of long term care at home.

In a few months, however, many New Yorkers will find themselves unable to qualify for these programs; for the first time, Community Medicaid applicants will have to provide comprehensive financial records for a newly-implemented “look-back period.” Gift transfers to trusts and family members, along with any other “uncompensated transfers” may disqualify applicants from obtaining Medicaid home care services for an extended period of time.

The start date of the implementation of the look-back period has been pushed back several times because of continuing federal requirements enacted as part of COVID relief. According to the latest announcement by New York State Department of Health, the earliest date of these changes to go in effect is March 31, 2024. All persons applying for Medicaid Home Care services in New York State after the start date of the new rules will be subjected to a phased in look-back period which will eventually reach 30 months (2.5 years).

Importantly, there have been no changes to the exempt transfer rules. Thus, transfers to a spouse or to a disabled child remain exempt. In addition, exempt status of Nazi Victims reparations remain intact. The effect of the new rules on homestead transfers have not yet been fully determined.

If you believe that you or a loved one would benefit from Medicaid Home Care services within the next two years, and you have assets in excess of the Medicaid limitations, you would be well advised to take immediate action. If immediate action is not possible, there are still planning opportunities to preserve assets.

Contact Lissner & Lissner LLP Today

If you are concerned about how the new Medicaid legislation will affect you or a loved one, the skilled legal team at Lissner & Lissner LLP can help. With more than five decades of experience, we have the skill, knowledge, and compassion to help our clients navigate the most complex issues surrounding aging, disability, and illness.

The increased restrictions affecting Medicaid’s home care services in New York is going to negatively impact thousands of Medicaid recipients throughout the state. But you may be able to avoid some of the extra headache and expense with proper estate planning. Time is of the essence.

Contact Lissner & Lissner LLP Today at a (212) 307-1499 for a confidential consultation about your case.