If Medicaid pays for your husband’s care in the nursing home, you will not have to contribute anything from your income towards his cost of care. You will also be entitled to keep a portion of his income. Medicaid will use a formula to determine your income needs. The calculation includes your housing costs but no other actual expenses.

If, for instance, Medicaid determines that you need $2,500 a month to live on, it will subtract your income from this amount to determine how much of your husband’s income you may keep. In this case, if your income allowance is $2,500 a month, you will be able to keep $1,451 ($2,500 – $1,049) of your husband’s income each month. The balance of $349 ($1,800 – $1,451) will have to be paid to the nursing home. (Remember, these are all approximate numbers.)

For more on this income allowance for spouses of nursing home residents who do not have enough to live on, click here.

For more on this and other Medicaid protections for the healthy spouse, click here.

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