How do you Qualify for Long-Term Care in Arizona?
Many people need long-term care to take care of their medical needs, but cannot afford to pay for it privately. The ALTCS program is designed with this scenario in mind. ALTCS can provide peace of mind for you or your family as you make decisions about long-term care. Knowing if you are eligible for ALTCS can help you make the best decisions for you or your loved one’s ongoing long-term care needs.
Besides living in Arizona, ALTCS applicants must meet other requirements to use the program. You need to meet medical and financial requirements that will be examined during the application process.
Some of these requirements are straightforward while others are more complicated. Knowing what to expect can help you prepare for the application process and understand if you qualify.
Am I or My Loved One Eligible for ALTCS?
Are you or your loved eligible for ALTCS? There are two interviews that must be completed to determine your ALTCS eligibility. The first step to determining your ALTCS eligibility is to call in to start the application. Once you start the application you will be financially evaluated. There are strict income and asset rules that must be met before an application can be approved.
If you are unsure about whether you will pass the financial evaluation, feel free to submit your contact information or call us to determine where you stand. If you have already applied, but are ineligible, the good news is that you can apply to ALTCS more than once. You can reapply as soon as you are eligible.
ALTCS Medical Requirements
The ALTCS program is designed to help seniors or people with disabilities who need hands-on care and treatment. This care can be through assisted living, a group home, a nursing home, or in-home care. To ensure that applicants qualify, you will need to have your medical history examined and your current needs looked at.
At the beginning of the application process, you will need to submit your age, medical history, and physician information. Once the ALTCS application is opened, a medical caseworker from the state will be assigned. The medical caseworker will perform a screening to ask about current and past medical needs. As you answer questions, you will want to be sure your symptoms can be backed up with medical records. This will help prove your needs.
The people who qualify for ALTCS include people with impaired cognitive function, those who need regular medical monitoring, and people unable to complete activities of daily living on their own. If you require care that would be expected in a nursing care facility, you should qualify for ALTCS.
ALTCS Income Requirements
When you apply for ALTCS, you will need to meet the state’s predetermined income requirement. ALTCS is made for people who need financial assistance to pay for medical needs. As a result, you need to meet strict income standards when applying for the program.
The income requirements are different if you’re applying as a single person or a married couple. A single applicant or an applicant who’s married but is applying alone can make up to $2,382 in monthly income. A married couple applying together cannot make more than $2,382 individually or $4,764 combined. If one spouse is healthy and planning to remain out of long-term care, the income limit changes to protect the well-spouse from becoming impoverished.
Income is measured by gross income, meaning that they calculated income before any deductions are taken out. from This means income is calculated before the Medicare Part B premium is taken from Social Security, before any deductions from private health insurance premiums, and before tax withholdings from a private pension.
If you fail to meet the income requirements, an income only trust can be used. As legal document preparers, we can assist with the creation of an income only trust if you need one to become eligible.
ALTCS Asset Requirements
Besides counting income, applicants will also have their assets examined. The resources an applicant has cannot exceed $2,000. If an applicant is married, all resources and assets are combined before the total is counted.
Not all resources are considered countable. Assets that are not included when determining eligibility are your primary home and one car. Additional homes, any savings accounts, and bonds are included as countable resources.
If only one spouse is applying for ALTCS, the non-applying spouse can sometimes keep a portion of the ALTCS spouse’s assets depending on the overall amount. Give us a call today and we can help determine what you can and cannot keep.
ALTCS does a sixty month look back period, meaning all gift-giving, transfers, or large purchases within the last five years are looked at during the application process. Excessive purchases or transfers can cause problems for applicants and people may be denied if there’s too much money moving around.
The asset requirement can be one of the most complicated parts of applying for ALTCS. This is why it’s helpful to have a consultation with someone professionally experienced with the program. We can help you determine if you have too many assets to qualify. If you or your loved one is over the asset limit, we can help you save as much of your assets as possible while still becoming eligible for ALTCS.
Does it Cost Anything to Figure out If I Am Eligible?
Senior Planning offers a free consultation and we can usually determine fairly quickly whether or not you will be eligible. When considering ALTCS, it is important to know the different requirements and how you meet or don’t meet them. ALTCS is designed for specific situations and their application and screening process will determine if you meet those situations.
The medical requirement is usually straight forward. Your medical history plus the screening ALTCS completes will determine if an applicant meets the qualifications.
The income and asset requirements can be more difficult to understand. The strict definitions of what counts and the strict requirements disqualify many people. By meeting with a professional who understands the definitions, you can prepare yourself for the screening process.
Applying for ALTCS can be a stressful situation. Our team is ready to help you prepare for it. Learn what you should expect and how you can qualify for ALTCS to get the medical care you need.