How long did you say the government looks back to see if assets have been transferred before you can get Medicaid?

The answer is 60 months (30 months in California).  If a transfer for less than fair market value is discovered, a penalty period is determined by dividing the amount you gave away by the average monthly cost of care in your area, and that’s how long you have to wait before Medicaid will pay. For example, if you give away $300,000 and your state used $5,000 as the average cost, that would result in a penalty period of 60 months (5 years) before Medicaid would pay your bill. Also, states are required to do estate recovery at the death of the second spouse that can include a lien upon the house (in most states). But remember, the big issue with Medicaid is your loss of choice. When you are on Medicaid, you go where there is a bed, which very likely may not be the nursing home of your choice, and your option for extensive home care or care in an assisted living facility (in most states) is gone.

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