If my uncle leaves my mom an inheritance, will Medicaid take it?
My 88 year old mother resides in a New Jersey nursing home with diagnosed dementia. She is on Medicaid. Her brother lives in Florida and has been hospitalized there with inoperable cancer. His will was drawn up but never signed and now won't be signed due to his state of health. When the will goes through probate, if his sister who is next of kin, is awarded an inheritance, how can I keep the nursing home from taking it? I have Power of Attorney for my mother's finances and health.
If his Will is not signed, there is no Will to be presented to Probate unless he had a previous Will that is still in effect. If your mother were to be eligible to receive anything from her brother's estate through the laws of intestacy (if he dies without a Will and has no surviving parents, spouse or children)you could through the Durable Power of Attorney disclaim her receipt of an inheritance, but most states' Medicaid offices consider this to be a disqualifying gift.
The only way you could preserve the assets would be for your uncle's guardian, conservator or attorney under a durable power of attorney, if sufficient authority is contained within it to set up a trust that would avoid assets going to your mother.
Even if Medicaid does warrant the funds, isn't that better than asking your neighbors and other residents of your state to pay for moms care? The timming of lifes events is God's work. Things would have turned out differently had it been so intended, and yes, you might have been the benificiary.