Legal Resources

Long Term Care Handbook – Forms

Kelley Blue Book
Use this reference to determine the value of your automobile.

Savings Bonds Online
A helpful site for determining the value of your savings bonds. There is an online Savings Bond calculator as well as a Savings Bond Wizard, a software program that can be downloaded to your computer and used to calculate and print out the values of your savings bonds.

Historical Stock Prices
Our office uses this link to obtain stock and mutual fund values for death tax returns, Medicaid applications and Resource Assessments. Another site that provides historical quotes is Big Charts. To find elusive CUSIPS for stocks and mutual funds, try Fidelity’s site. Plug in the stock symbol or name and you’ll get the CUSIP.

Tax Reference – See below
A lot of our older clients want to know if they have to file a return – For 2010 here are the answers:

For Federal Filing Requirements Click Here

For Pennsylvania Filing Requirements Click Here

Please note that the requirements for Pennsylvania taxes are much lower than for federal tax. Do not assume that if you don’t file federal that you don’t have to file state as well. Additionally, if your spouse passes away during the tax year, you cannot file a joint return. You must file separate returns with a final return being filed for the deceased spouse. You can allocate your income across these two returns.

Protections for the Spouses
When a spouse enters a nursing home and applies or considers medicaid, there are two broad categories of protections – one that protects “Resources” such as assets and the other “Income” which seeks to assure that the spouse at home has sufficient income to maintain her household.

Resources – These are determined by “Resource Allowances” for the community spouse “CSRA”

Minimum – $23,448
Maximum – $117,240

How does this apply? On the day your spouse enters a nursing home intending and is expected to stay permanently your assets are totaled and divided by one-half. That one-half must fall between the minimum and maximum CSRA. In other words, if you have $150,000 then the community spouse may keep $75,000. If you have $300,000 the most you can keep is $117,240. Basically it is one-half up to a maximum of $117.240. The money remaining after is excess resources which must be spent down to qualify for medicaid. Some of this may be used to shore up the MMNA – see below.

Monthly Maintenance Needs Allowance (Income the spouse in community needs as calculated by the law) “MMNA”

Minimum – $1,967
Maximum – $2,931

How is this relevant? If you admit your husband to a nursing home and are otherwise eligible for Medical Assistance and your shelter and other costs calculate out to the Maximum needs allowance, that you can keep your husbands income before paying it over to the home to bring your income up to your MMNA.  Basically, it is a calculation that attempts to assure that the spouse at home is able to maintain their household after a nursing home admission. It barely does permit this.   If there are excess resources, then it is possible to set some of these assets aside to create the additional income needed by the spouse to bring her up to the MMNA.

Social Security Online – The Official Website of the U.S. Social Security Administration

My  Social Security – Benefit Statements, work history and other important information