How will the nursing home get paid if Social Security goes bankrupt?

1 answer | Last updated: Sep 25, 2016
Sadsade asked...

My mother is in a nursing home that accepts Medicaid as payment for her stay. Her social security benefits are automatically deposited to her checking account, and the nursing home is set up as an automatic payee for all but the cost of her medical insurance and $30 for personal care needs. If she gets a Social Security increase, the payment to the nursing home is increased. My question is what will happen if Social Security goes bankrupt or stops making payments to recipients? How does the nursing home get paid for the amount she would normally be paying from Social Security?


Expert Answers

Barbara Steinberg is the CEO and founder of BLS Eldercare Financial Solutions, which specializes in helping families pay for long-term care for their loved ones. A registered financial gerontologist, she speaks regularly on the topic of paying for long-term care and is a financial expert for Caring.com.

There is a lot of hype in the media about the solvency of Social Security. Out of the three entitlement programs for seniors, Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security, Social Security is the most solvent. Without making any changes to the Social Security payout formula, Social Security is solvent until the year 2042. Any changes that are made will impact the younger generations, not the people who are already receiving the benefit.

The more important questions are what changes will be made to Medicare and Medicaid? Most likely, any changes will impact the younger generations and not your mother. At this time, nobody knows what changes will be made so there is no point in speculating.