As couples age, the relationship that was once held together by a tight bond of affection may grow apart with time. Couples split and resolve their differences, possibly amicably, without the involvement of the court. However, failing to receive a divorce decree from the Court can result in an estranged spouse being held personally liable for his or her ex-spouse’s long term care bills. This is a more common scenario than some might think. Ultimately, an estranged spouse should not have to be personally liable for someone they may not have seen or had a discussion with in many years.
Once a loved one is admitted to a long term care facility and spends down what he or she considers the assets, the nursing facility will submit an application for Medicaid benefits to pay for care. Oftentimes, the patient or their family neglects to mention that the patient failed to officially divorce a spouse and now that estranged spouse’s assets are included as available assets to pay toward his cost of care. This always comes as a surprise to the healthy spouse and they will be required to pay $12,000.00 per month for the long term care. You can see the financial difficulty and pain this may lead to for the separated spouse.
Mooney Law is Central Pennsylvania’s one stop legal shop for you and your family’s legal needs. Attorney Clayton Lingg practices exclusively in extensive estate planning, estate administration, and Medicaid planning practice. Consult with the team at Mooney Law to address the most appropriate route to ensure your assets are protected from unforeseen life expenses. Call today at 717-200-HELP or 833-MOONEYLAW to schedule your consultation.