2018 Louisiana Medicaid Long-Term Care Income and Resource Update

The Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals has updated key income and resource limitations for Medicaid Long-Term Care benefits.

A single person can have no more than $2,000 of countable resources to qualify for Medicaid Long-Term Care benefits. Married couples both receiving Medicaid Long-Term Care benefits cannot have combined countable resources in excess of $3,000. There is no increase in these amount from 2017.

The spouse of a Medicaid Long-Term Care recipient residing at home (known as the community spouse) is allowed to retain additional resources and income. These amounts are frequently increased each year. The Community Spouse is allowed to retain resources pursuant to the Community Spouse Resource Allowance. In 2018, this amount is increased to $123,600. In 2017 this amount was $120,900.

The Community Spouse is also allowed to retain additional monthly income. This additional income is the Minimum Monthly Maintenance Needs Allowance. In 2018, the community spouse’s Minimum Monthly Maintenance Needs Allowance is increased to $3,090.00. In 2017 this amount was $3,022.50.

2018 Louisiana Medicaid Long-Term Care Key Numbers

Divestment Penalty Divisor $4,000.00
Individual Resource Allowance $2,000.00
Income Limit (SIL) $2,250.00
Monthly Personal Needs Allowance $38.00
Community Spouse Resource Allowance $123,600
Monthly Maintenance Needs Allowance $3,090.00
Resource Allowance for a Couple (if husband and wife both reside in a facility) $3,000.00

Although a spouse residing at home can use the community spouse resource allowance to retain additional assets and the minimum monthly maintenance needs allowance to retain additional income, planning is often needed to help preserve assets from Medicaid spend-down. If there are excess assets, there are many planning strategies available to minimize the devastating effects of long-term care expenses. Keep in mind that early planning can result in more choices and optimal results; but many planning strategies are available for a loved one who is about to enter a nursing home or is already residing in a nursing home.

If you have questions about qualifying for Medicaid Long-Term Care benefits in Louisiana, or any other retirement or estate planning question, contact estate and elder law attorney and Certified Financial Planner, John Sirois at 985-580- 2520 or by email at john@jsiroislaw.com. You can also find more information about retirement, estate and elder care planning in John’s book, Louisiana Retirement and Estate Planning, 2017 Edition, available by contacting John or through Amazon.com.