At the law office of Bonnie M. Benson, we know that it is often difficult, and sometimes impossible, for Delaware senior citizens and their families to afford long-term care without assistance. Medicaid exists to help people with limited resources and/or low income to afford health care services, which include long-term care for the elderly and/or disabled.

However, to make sure that those receiving benefits are in genuine need, a cap on income often applies. This means that if your income, or that of an elderly family member, exceeds the maximum allowed, Medicaid benefits are not available.

It can be a frustrating situation to have too little income to afford long-care services but make too much to qualify for Medicaid. Fortunately, you may be able to meet Medicaid eligibility requirements by putting some of your income into a Miller Trust.

A Miller Trust is an irrevocable trust, meaning that no modification is possible following its creation. It is a complicated estate planning tool, and its establishment must take place according to specific rules. However, once the trust is in place, your excess income can transfer into the trust, making you eligible for Medicaid benefits.

According to Delaware Health and Social Services, the assets remain in the Miller Trust until after you or your loved one dies. At that point, they transfer to the state Medicaid program for reimbursement of the cost of the care received during life.

Not qualifying for Medicaid benefits for long-term care is a significant problem. A Miller Trust may be a reasonable solution. More information about long-term care planning options, including Miller Trusts, is available on our website.