Javascript is not enabled.

Javascript must be enabled to use this site. Please enable Javascript in your browser and try again.

Financial Protections Extended to Medicaid Spouses Skip to content

Have questions about your Social Security benefits? The AARP Social Security Resource Center can help.

 

Congress Extends Financial Protections for Medicaid Spouses

Home-based benefits can continue without bankrupting husbands or wives of recipients  

Man and woman taking care of each other

Getty Images

En español | Medicaid recipients who want to remain in their homes and communities and get benefits to help them with basic needs such as eating, bathing and dressing can continue to get these services without fear that their spouses will suffer financial harm, under a bill Congress has sent to the president’s desk.

Without the measure the Senate approved unanimously on Tuesday, these spouses of Medicaid recipients wouldn’t be able to protect some modest amounts of their income and assets. Under the extension, in 2019, states must allow spouses to keep at least $2,057.50 in monthly income and may allow up to $3,160.50 without jeopardizing the services their husband or wife receives at home or in the community. States must also allow spouses to protect between $25,284 and $126,420 in assets. The bill, which the House passed last week, extends these protections through September.

“This extension ensures that individuals can continue to get the Medicaid benefits they need to live in their homes and communities where they want to be and that their spouses are protected against impoverishment,” says Rhonda Richards, a senior legislative representative at AARP.

Medicaid has long protected some assets and income of spouses of people who receive care in nursing homes or other institutions. In 2014, Congress extended that protection to spouses of Medicaid enrollees who get services that help them live independently in their homes and communities. The protections are designed to ensure that families can remain together at home and in the community and still have enough resources to pay for such essentials as food, medicine, rent and home repairs.

Join the Discussion

0 | Add Yours

Please leave your comment below.

You must be logged in to leave a comment.

GO TO THIS ARTICLE