Medi-Cal Estate Recovery Reform Passes Legislature

by | Aug 1, 2016 | With Your Family in Mind

 California’s budget bill, passed June 17, 2016, incorporated the health budget trailer bill (AB 33) to limit Medi-Cal estate recovery to the limits only required under Federal law.  This includes the most comprehensive Medi-Cal Reform measures since 1993.
Sections of this bill provides commencing January 1, 2017:
Estate recovery limited to only that required by federal law, i.e., for those 55 years of age and up, nursing home facility, home and community based services, etc. or any age if person “permanently institutionalized.” and “Estate” limited to probate estate – thus, living trusts, Joint Tenancy, Transfer on Death Deed, etc. will not be subject to recovery.
The “definition” of “Estate” makes a huge difference in what assets Medi-Cal will be able to place a claim against at the death of a Medi-Cal Long Term Care recipient.  However, this change will not occur until after January 1, 2017.   Senator Ed Hernandez, chair of the Senate Health Committee, who championed this change stated:
“Estate recovery forces people over age 55 who need Medi-Cal to choose between their own health care and passing on modest possessions to their heirs,” said Senator Ed Hernandez (D-West Covina). “I have been fighting for three years to limit the scope of California’s Medi-Cal estate recovery to only what is required under federal law. California’s practice is fundamentally unfair to the lowest income Californians who need Medi-Cal for basic health services. It is a huge victory that this year’s budget limits estate recovery so that people with modest family homes can pass it on to their children.”
Ms. MacDonald’s practice is limited to Estate Planning, Probate and Trust Administration.  Ms. MacDonald maintains her practice in the Santa Clarita Valley at 25115 Avenue Stanford, Suite A-209 in Valencia.  She can be reached at 661-294-6464.

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