Superior Court rules son responsible for mother’s nursing home bills
By Mitch Adel
Involve your family
As the Pennsylvania courts have reminded us, family members should participate in this process. There are sound legal and financial options that can ensure that long-term care is provided for parents in a way that protects their children from civil and criminal liability.
There are only two ways for children to protect themselves from being held responsible for their parent’s nursing home debts:
1. Pay for the nursing home bill themselves.
2. Properly qualify their parents for Medicaid benefits.
When a parent is properly qualified for Medicaid benefits, the child is no longer liable for their care.
Make sure you qualify
Veteran’s benefits and Medicaid are important sources of funding long term care for many seniors. The best scenario is to pre-plan so that you or your loved ones will qualify immediately when they need long-term care. Research benefit programs and resources that may help at home, in assisted living facilities and in nursing homes. Long-term care usually starts at home, often years before a nursing home is needed, and there are programs and sources of funding that can help. Information for some of the most popular and valuable programs is available through the following online resources:
http://www.homecareohio.org/ http://www.ohioaging.org/ http://aging.ohio.gov/services/ombudsman/regional.aspx http://www.proseniors.org/ http://aging.ohio.gov/services/passport/ hhtp://vba.va.gov/VBA/
While these tips can serve as important general guidelines for families working to prepare for the challenges of long-term care, more detailed resources are available. An elder law attorney is a critical resource in the team that will support you and your family as you embark on the eldercare journey. A trusted professional can help design a plan to meet your family’s needs in a way that leaves both parents and children protected.