Does a nursing home take your pension and Social Security benefits?
Some nursing homes may offer resident trust funds into which patients can deposit their pension checks, Social Security checks, and other monies. The issue is that unethical nursing home staff can potentially steal from these accounts. Nursing homes aren’t allowed to make residents deposit funds in resident trust funds and have no legal right to handle residents’ money.
Even if a resident deposits cash in one of these funds, they must certify every transaction or designate a representative. However, if you desire to deposit your funds in such an account, ensure your state requires audits and background checks. If not, see if the nursing home runs criminal background checks on the people who will have access to seniors’ accounts and if it performs voluntary audits of accounts.
• To defend a senior in a nursing home, they have the right to an attorney with a trusted representative.
• Make sure to interview nursing home staff before choosing a home and ask about safeguards against theft.
• Use electronic direct deposit for payments rather than checks, which could be fraudulently cashed, and get bank statements electronically.
Nursing homes have a lot of expenses that need to be paid. That is the cost of providing round-the-clock care. At that stage of a person’s life, when they need to be moved to a nursing home, they are not spending money on much of anything else. So, where does the money to pay the nursing home bill come from? Their assets, if they have any, and if not, Medicaid picks up the bill. Your social security money is applied to the account before being sent to Medicaid (but a certain amount is left for you to spend on personal expenses). If you have a pension, that must be applied to the nursing home bill.
The bottom line, Medicaid will see to it that you are not on the street, but it is the payer of the last resort after other assets are gone. For example, If you own a house, Medicaid will put a lien on it, and once you pass, your heirs can either sell the house and use the proceeds to pay off the lien or pay the lien outright to clear the title and keep the house.
There are multiple reports of people that worked in the same company, worked similar jobs for numerous years, and had other similarities in their working styles. Still, people who saved their money didn’t go on vacations and never lived a luxurious life ended up in the exact situation in the saving home that they shared with the “more spontaneous” group of people who spent all of their money and didn’t save a nickel. The nursing home takes their pension and social security benefits before giving both groups the same service.
Residents can deposit their pension checks, Social Security checks, and other monies in the offered trust funds. The problem is that unscrupulous nursing home employees may steal from these accounts!