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Stimulus payments and Medicaid patients: what you need to know

In order to qualify for Medicaid, a patient must be below the income and asset threshold that the program sets forth. Any assets beyond the Medicaid limits usually qualify as resources and may go towards paying for some of the care that the patient receives.

Unfortunately, some assisted living facilities and nursing homes are now using this information to defraud Medicaid patients and steal their stimulus money.

Stimulus checks belong entirely to the Medicaid patient

According to CBS Tampa Bay, certain facilities are convincing Medicaid patients that their stimulus checks count as “resources” under federal guidelines. However, the CARES Act categorizes these payments as tax credits, which means they are exempt from the resource definition. In short, Medicaid patients get to keep all their stimulus money, without exception.

Unfortunately, many patients do not understand or remember how Medicaid rules work. This may result in the patient willingly signing over the check without a second thought.

Investigate your loved one’s situation

If your loved one receives Medicaid, it is a good idea to investigate to make sure that he or she did not fall victim to this scam. If your loved one experienced this type of fraud, it is important to file a complaint right away with the Federal Trade Commission.

Financial fraud is a form of elder abuse and authorities take it very seriously. Often, it is the family members of the victims that must advocate for the victim. By communicating regularly with loved ones in these types of facilities, it may be easier to recognize when something is amiss.

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