Wartime Veterans May Face Look-Back Period
There are certain benefit programs that senior citizens often rely on such as Medi-Cal that have upper
resource limits. You cannot qualify for the program as a way to pay for long-term care if you have
countable assets that exceed a certain amount.
As a result, Medi-Cal planning can include giving away resources to your children and/or grandchildren
as a way to stay within the limits. After all, they would be inheriting these resources anyway after you
However, there is a five-year look-back period (California is currently enforcing a 30-month look-back
period as of the writing of this article). If you divest yourself of assets within five years of applying your
eligibility is delayed. The length of the penalty is based on the average cost of long-term care as it
compares to the amount of money that you give away.
Another program that has an upper resource limit is the Veterans Aid & Attendance special pension.
Wartime veterans who need assistance with their day-to-day living needs can get a monthly check to
help pay for their care. However, there is an upper resource limit of $80,000 (though your home and
your vehicle don't count toward this figure).
On this day there is no Veterans Aid & Attendance look-back period. However, Sen. Ron Wyden of
Oregon has proposed such a period. He would like to see a three-year look-back applied to this
veterans benefit, and such provision could be added in the future.
As you can see, last-minute scrambling can be problematic. The wise course of action is to develop a
comprehensive plan for aging with the assistance of a San Jose elder law attorney who is specifically
focused on retirement and estate planning.
Experienced estate planning attorneys Campbell CA of the Law Office of Roy W. Litherland offers
estate planning and business planning resources to residents of Campbell CA. To learn more about
these free resources, please visit www.attorneyoffice.com/ today.