Ohio Governor John Kasich’s 2016-2017 proposed budget calls for a number of changes to Ohio Medicaid that will effect current and future Medicaid recipients.
Good News for Ohio’s Disabled
Currently, an individual deemed disabled and granted Supplemental Security Income (SSI) by the Social Security Administration (SSA) must complete a separate application to qualify for medical coverage under Medicaid. Under the proposed plan, Ohioans who are granted SSI based on disability will automatically be enrolled in Medicaid.
No More Spend Down Program
Ohio intends to eliminate its spend-down program. The spend-down program allows individuals with income over the maximum limits to spend the excess on medical expenses to qualify for Medicaid coverage each month.
Without the spend-down program, individuals who otherwise qualify for Medicaid with the exception of their income will need to have a Qualifying Income Trust, also called an Miller Trust, prepared for them or alternatively, enroll in Medicaid through the exchange. The income limit for a single person on community Medicaid is $721 and $2,199 for a single person in institution or waiver program.
Qualifying Income Trust aka Miller Trust
A Qualifying Income Trust, also called a Miller Trust, takes in income in excess of the maximum limits. The income in the trust can be used for deductible expenses like private health insurance premiums and past medical bills, and the remaining funds would be paid to the institution or health care provider. Any sum remaining in the trust upon death would be subject to estate recovery.
The Asset Limit Will Change
Single individuals will be permitted a maximum of $2,000 of non-exempt assets rather than $1,500.
It is important to note that there are Medicaid planning options available for those who do not meet the income or asset limits for Medicaid and are in need of health care coverage or long term care. For more information, contact a Cleveland Medicaid Planning attorney.