The Five Year Lookback and Estate Recovery in Oregon
An explanation of how transferring assets can effect the five year look back and Oregon's estate recovery system.
Estate RecoveryFederal law requires state Medicaid programs to recover certain Medicaid benefits paid on a person’s behalf. For those individuals who are 55 or older, each state is required to seek recovery of the amount the state’s Medicaid program spent on each person's behalf. However, states may not recover from the estate of a Medicaid enrollee who is survived by a spouse, child under 21, or a blind or disabled child. However, on the passing of the spouse, child under 21, or a blind or disabled child, the Medicaid claim may then be pursued. States may impose liens on real property in order to recover payment for Medicaid benefits.
Oregon law currently allows "expanded estate recovery," providing the state the ability to recover from one's probate estate and from other property ownership including a life estate.
An elder law attorney can assist you with designing a plan to protect your real property and other assets from estate recovery.
The Five Year Look BackThe Medicaid application will require you to list all uncompensated transfers over the past five years, including gifts or transfers for less than fair market value. Depending on the total value of all uncompensated transfers over that period, Medicaid will impose a penalty period and an amount of time before an individual can receive Medicaid benefits.
It is best to plan ahead. An elder law attorney can assist you with creating a plan to avoid any penalty period before eligibility or the need to make any uncompensated transfers when long-term care is necessary.