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Can you decline your veteran benefits to go on Medicaid

My dad has a Veteran's Pension and Aid and Assistance. However, that is not enough to cover the cost of his assisted living facility. His income with the pension/A&A is too high for Medicaid. Can he terminate his benefits and go on Medicaid (it would be a Medicaid waiver program which allows him to live in assisted living and not a nursing home). If not, he will be forced to move out of his assisted living facility and into a nursing home?
Status: Open    Jan 13, 2017 - 07:58 AM

VA Benefits, Medicare/Medicaid

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Jan 18, 2017 - 06:13 AM

Yes, just let the VA know via letter that he will be entering Medicaid, they should adjust the pension accordingly.
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By gismart on Jan 21, 2017 - 05:58 AM | Like (0)  |  Report

Slightly different issue, but I am told that my mother who is in Assisted Living and has a VA benefit cannot remain there if she financially can no longer pay the difference between the cost and her benefits - i.e. that she must go to a Nursing Home rather than have her Medicaid pay to the Assisted Living Center. She does not require skilled nursing, but will be out of other funds from the sale of her home in about two years. At that point, if she has only her pension must she go to a nursing home even though it will cost the tax payer more than keeping her in assisted living. It makes no sense.

By vanderkids on Jan 21, 2017 - 03:56 PM | Like (0)  |  Report

There are some assisted livings facilities that accept medicaid. I would reach out to the local area agency on aging for information on local waiver assisted livings. Also inquire from them about coordination of Medicaid and VA benefits.

By mwbernardi on Jan 23, 2017 - 01:51 PM | Like (0)  |  Report

We tried that with my dad and after a long battle the end result was that Medicaid forced my dad to take his SS and VA benefits (pension and Aid and Assistant) which put him over the income level allowed for Medicaid which prevented him from participating in the Medicaid Waiver program which would have allowed him to stay in his assisted living facility and forcing him to move into a nursing home which automatically converts his VA benefits to $90 per month making him Medicaid eligible. So, the stay will end up paying more to be in a nursing home, my dad gets worse care, and he gets punished for being a WWII vet. Nice job government!

By gismart on Jan 23, 2017 - 03:15 PM | Like (0)  |  Report

I hear you. It is plain stupid - and cost the tax payer more. I can't wrap my hear around this.

By becky on Jan 24, 2017 - 02:35 PM | Like (0)  |  Report

If income is over Medicaid limits, check into whether a Qualified Income Trust (also called a Miller Trust) will allow the person to be eligible, even though over the income limit. One word of caution, we have found that putting the VA A&A benefit into the QIC can be less ideal because it becomes part of the applied income or co-payment. We're in Texas so of course you will want to consult the laws in your state.

Also, for notifying VA that the person is Medicaid approved, we were recently advised to use form 21-0779 (which in TX is completed by the nursing home - perhaps the assisted living facility can do it also). We have had VA take many months to reduce benefit to $90 but this form is suppose to get it done more quickly...time will tell.
Hope this helps!
Becky :-)

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Jan 24, 2017 - 02:36 PM

If income is over Medicaid limits, check into whether a Qualified Income Trust (also called a Miller Trust) will allow the person to be eligible, even though over the income limit. One word of caution, we have found that putting the VA A&A benefit into the QIC can be less ideal because it becomes part of the applied income or co-payment. We're in Texas so of course you will want to consult the laws in your state.

Also, for notifying VA that the person is Medicaid approved, we were recently advised to use form 21-0779 (which in TX is completed by the nursing home - perhaps the assisted living facility can do it also). We have had VA take many months to reduce benefit to $90 but this form is suppose to get it done more quickly...time will tell.
Hope this helps!
Becky :-)
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