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Mom needs long term care. What to do?

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My mother lives with me but has dementia and she may soon need to move into a facility. She has only Social Security income. She gave me her savings which is $150,000 so she could help pay her way at my house. I know there is some kind of look-back, and how would that work if she had to go into a home?

When applying for Medicaid, there is a five-year look-back period.  The $150,000 given to you by your mother would be classified as a gift unless it was before the five-year look back.

You mentioned the money was used to pay her way at your house, was there a rental agreement?  Medicaid would want to see a rental agreement and household expenses totaling $150,000.  If less money was spent on the household, it must be paid back and spent towards the cost of her care in a facility.  Keep in mind you cannot go back and add a rental agreement, but you can start now if it hasn’t been done.

If you are a dependent disabled child, your mother would not be subject to the look back. 

If none of these situations apply, you can give the money back.  If the money is not given back, your mother would be disqualified from applying for Medicaid for a fixed number of months or would have to pay out of pocket for her care until she has spent the $150,000.