Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Looking for Free Help on Medicaid? Columbia Legal Services Has It Covered

I live in Washington State.  So do my clients.  When they're understandably stumped about Medicaid for their aging parent, I turn them over to the best free sources around:  publications by Columbia Legal Services.

Contracting with the Department of Social and Health Services, Columbia Legal Services produces documents that are pretty much stripped of jargon.  They're straightforward and easy to understand. Two of them stand out as extremely helpful, asking questions like:  "How much money can my parent keep and still qualify for Medicaid?"  "What kinds of things can be purchased as she is spending assets to qualify?"  and "What is the income limit for Medicaid eligibility?"

The two documents are:  Questions and Answers on Medicaid for Nursing Home Residents and Questions and Answers on the COPES Program.

They answer the same basic questions of how to qualify physically and financially, how the person "participates" in paying for his or her care, what miscellaneous services Medicaid covers, etc.

Today the COPES program is used most often. It's an alternative to nursing home care.  The care under COPES can be provided at home, in an assisted living community or in an adult family home.

So if you might be looking at Medicaid for your aging parent, either now or in the future, I encourage you to start with the COPES publication by Columbia Legal Services.

Have any of you looked at these publications?  Have they been helpful?

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