Skip to main content
Ruthann P. Lacey

Ruthann Lacey’s Answers

94 total


  • My husband gets ssdi and one of children is turning 18 so after she turns 18 and her benefits stop will his check get the increa

    Ruthann’s Answer

    No, your husband's check amount will remain the same.

    See question 
  • My dad has a $7,000. burial plan also term ins $10,000 retirement benefit does this exempt him from medicaid.

    Ruthann’s Answer

    Georgia Medicaid counts the value of term life insurance before it counts the prepaid funeral contract so, yes, the contract may well create an eligibility issue. I recommend you consult with a Certified Elder Law Attorney (www.nelf.org) to determine your options for addressing this issue.

    See question 
  • My step - father is entering a nursing and must apply for Medicaid . How can my mother protect her assets ?

    Ruthann’s Answer

    I recommend your mother consult with a Certified Elder Law Attorney regarding these important questions. She can find one near her at www.nelf.org.

    See question 
  • Social security amount

    Ruthann’s Answer

    You could get more if you lived in a state that pays a State Supplement. Georgia is not such a state. Another way to get more income is if you were determined to be disabled before your 22nd birthday, then at the disability, retirement, or death of a parent you can take SSDI benefits on the parent's record.

    See question 
  • My son who is 17 years of age, he gets SSI disability. By selling my house can he lose his disibility?

    Ruthann’s Answer

    It will depend on how much money you have after you sell your house, as well as on when your son will turn 18. Because SSI is means tested, if you hold funds in your name from the sale of the house while your son is a minor, those funds may cause your son to lose his SSI benefits. However, when he is 18 then SSI will no longer look at your resources to determine his eligibility. It is a good idea to consider a Special Needs Trust for your son in your estate planning, so that he can maintain his SSI and Medicaid eligibility if something were to happen to you.

    See question 
  • My mother, 73, moved in with us 6 mo. ago. She has Alz and will need extended care. She has no real assets and draws $1510 a mo.

    Ruthann’s Answer

    Your mother may be eligible for Medicaid benefits to help pay for her care. The eligibility criteria varies depending on which Medicaid program she may be applying for. For more information about nursing home Medicaid eligibility, go to http://www.elderlaw-lacey.com/articles/Medicaid-2011.pdf.

    See question 
  • In GA can house be saved from Medicaid recovery after mom passes away?

    Ruthann’s Answer

    The answer depends on a number of facts that you haven't addressed. I recommend you seek counsel if a Certified Elder Law Attorney soon to determine the options that are available. Go to www.nelf.org to find a CELA in your area.

    See question 
  • Can you collect retirement pay from a private previous employer without losing ssd (social security disability) payments?

    Ruthann’s Answer

    Social Security Disability Insurance is not means tested, so other unearned income will not disqualify one from SSDI eligibility. However, if the benefit is Supplemental Security Income (SSI), then other income would be an issue.

    See question 
  • I am retiring at age of 65 and wondering what will be the Medicare coverage for my wife who is 10 years younger than me?

    Ruthann’s Answer

    Your wife and daughter will need to secure their own health insurance. Your eligibility for Medicare does not have any effect on their insurance status.

    See question 
  • What is required by law to get a person legally declared incompetent? Will a note from a doctor/neurologist suffice?

    Ruthann’s Answer

    If your loved one with Alzheimer's Disease is in Georgia, and if he or she doesn't have a Financial or Health Care Power of Attorney that was signed while he or she was able to understand the effect of the document, then it may be necessary to have a Guardian and/or a Conservator appointed. This takes place in the Probate Court, and is initiated by filing a Petition for Appointment of Guardian and Conservator. A doctor's Affidavit is sometimes filed with the Petition, but that document alone isn't enough to cause the court to determine incapacity. I encourage you to meet with an attorney who is experienced in handling Guardianship and Conservatorship matters to advise you regarding all of your options and the pros and cons of each. Go to www.nelf.com to find a Certified Elder Law Attorney near you.

    See question