Planning for Life

EXPANDED ESTATE RECOVERY – We Need Your Help By 4/7/16!

Posted by Patricia C. D'Agostino on March 31, 2016

CALL TO ACTION:  This is a call to action to our clients and readers who own their homes jointly with their spouses or with another individual and those who have created life estate deeds.

Governor Baker has proposed to expand Medicaid estate recovery by Outside Section 11 of the fiscal year 2017 budget.  The proposed provisions would allow MassHealth to make claims against all property in which the deceased MassHealth member had an ownership interest immediately prior to death.  This includes property passing by survivorship or beneficiary designation to a spouse or child that was held in joint names, life estate, tenants by the entirety or living trusts.  Current law limits estate recovery to the probate estate of a deceased MassHealth member – meaning the Commonwealth could recover if the deceased member owned their home in his or her name alone.

We need your help to defeat this proposal.  Please send letters to your State Representative and State Senator by April 7th to oppose this Outside Section (the House budget will likely be finalized by 4/8 so it is crucial that the Representatives get the letter by this date).  Your letter will make a difference, please take the time to do this!

If you are married and own your home jointly or have created a life estate deed, HERE is a sample letter.

If you are not married, but own your home jointly or have created a life estate deed, HERE is a sample letter.

If you are an elder law attorney, HERE is a sample letter. 

Please click HERE to find your State Representative and State Senator along with their email and mailing addresses.  

To learn more about estate recovery, you can view the fact sheet HERE.

THANK YOU FOR YOUR ATTENTION AND FOR YOUR HELP AND THANK YOU TO MASSACHUSETTS NAELA's PUBLIC POLICY COMMITTEE FOR DEVELOPING THESE MATERIALS!

This information is also available through MassNAELA.

Topics: MassHealth, Estate Planning

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