What Happens to Home Sale Proceeds If One Spouse Goes to Nursing Home?

 In Long-Term Care Planning

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Question:

If, as seniors, we sell a jointly-owned primary residence and we split the proceeds, will the assets be protected if one of us ends up in a Medicaid nursing home?

Response:

I’m assuming you’re married to one another—in which case, the answer is no. Under the Medicaid rules, you may keep your home and still get Medicaid coverage. But other assets, such as savings and investments (including the proceeds of the sale of your home), are limited to just over $130,000 for a married couple (as of 2020). So, if the proceeds of the sale of your home exceed this amount, they will no longer be protected.

The situation could be different if the sale occurred after one of you moved to a nursing home and has been approved for Medicaid coverage. In that case, there’s no limit on the assets of the healthy spouse. If the house was transferred to the healthy spouse before the sale, he or she could keep all the proceeds.

Related Articles:

Can Community Spouse Keep Proceeds of Sale of Home?

Asset Limits for Medicaid Coverage of Nursing Home Care

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