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Help with understanding the Medicaid process of getting an elderly woman into a state-run rursing home that accepts Medicaid.


My family is needing to place our 89-year-old mom into a Maryland nursing home that accepts Medicaid.  She is an amputee that needs help with changing (incontinent) and has vascular dementia.  She doesn't have enough money to cover her bills.  We need to know if a nursing home that accepts Medicaid can make the family sign a paper that can go after the family for her unpaid bills.

Review & Legal Analysis: Financial Implications of Nursing Home Care for Elderly Individuals in Maryland

Your query pertains to the potential financial responsibilities your family may have regarding your 89-year-old mother's nursing home care in Maryland. Your mother, who suffers from vascular dementia and is an amputee, requires assistance with changing due to incontinence. The primary concern is whether a Medicaid-accepting nursing home can compel the family to cover her unpaid bills.

Relevant Statutes in Maryland

  • Maryland Annotated Code, Health - General, Title 19, Subtitle 3: This section contains Maryland's laws on nursing homes.
  • Title 42 of the Code of Federal Regulations, Section 483.15: This federal regulation stipulates the admission, transfer, and discharge rights of nursing home residents.

Please note that the above information might have been amended after my last update (September 2021). Kindly refer to the Maryland state legislature's official website for the most current laws and regulations.

Potential Solution

Under the federal law, specifically the provision of the Nursing Home Reform Act, nursing homes cannot require a third-party guarantee of payment as a condition of admission or expedited admission. However, a family member or friend can voluntarily agree to be responsible for the patient's financial obligations. You might want to compare lawyers in your area to better understand your obligations and rights.

Before proceeding, I would highly recommend consulting with an elder law attorney to help navigate the complexities of Medicaid eligibility and the nursing home application process in Maryland. The attorney can also provide assistance to find the right lawyer that fits your particular needs and situation.

Estimated Costs

Here are some estimated costs related to nursing home care in Maryland:

Service Approximate Cost
Private Room in Nursing Home $11,000 per month
Semi-Private Room in Nursing Home $10,000 per month
Assisted Living Facility $4,000 per month
Home Health Aide $4,200 per month

*These are approximate costs as of 2023 and may vary based on location and specific care needs.

Request for Additional Information

Could you please clarify if your family has considered seeking the services of an elder law attorney? Have you begun the Medicaid application process for your mother? Please remember you can ask a free legal question on our platform if you need more specific advice.

Relevant Questions

  1. Has your mother been evaluated to determine the level of care she requires?
  2. Has she been previously covered by any form of long-term care insurance?
  3. Does your mother have any other assets that could potentially be used to cover her nursing home expenses?

These questions are crucial to better understand the specifics of your situation and provide a more tailored response.

Alternative Solutions to Address the Financial Burden of Elderly Care

Navigating through the financial implications of elderly care can be challenging. Here are a few alternative options for you to consider.


The Maryland Department of Health oversees the Medicaid program. For those eligible, Medicaid can cover a portion of the nursing home cost. Your mother may qualify for the Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) waiver, which supports senior citizens who prefer to stay in their home or community. More information can be found on the Maryland Medicaid Long Term Services and Supports page.

Long-Term Care Insurance

If your mother has a long-term care insurance policy, it could help cover some costs of her care. It's worth checking if such a policy exists and what terms apply.

Veteran's Aid

If your mother or her spouse is a veteran, she may be eligible for certain benefits that can help cover the costs of her care. The Maryland Department of Veterans Affairs can provide more information on these benefits.

Senior Care Programs and Non-Profit Organizations

There are local programs and non-profit organizations in Maryland that offer assistance to senior citizens and their families. The Maryland Department of Aging is a good place to start looking for such resources.

Reverse Mortgage

If your mother owns her home, she could consider a reverse mortgage. This allows homeowners aged 62 or older to access the equity in their home while continuing to live in it. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau provides information on reverse mortgages and their potential implications.

Elder Law Attorney

Engaging an elder law attorney might help in identifying more personalized solutions based on your specific circumstances. They are well-versed in Medicaid planning, estate planning, and other areas relevant to elder care.

Remember to research and weigh the pros and cons of each option, to find the one that best suits your mother's needs and circumstances. You may also wish to find the right lawyer or ask a free legal question on our platform to get more specific advice.

Legal Disclaimer

This response is intended to provide general information and is not legal advice. No attorney-client relationship has been created through this communication. Always consult an attorney for legal advice in your particular situation.

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"Help with understanding the Medicaid process of getting an elderly woman into a state-run rursing home that accepts Medicaid."

Maryland nursing home litigation attorneys

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Written by Counselor
Fri, 08/04/2023 - 11:01

Comprehensive View of the Elderly Care Scenario

The complexities of securing suitable and affordable elderly care span multiple dimensions. Let's examine this issue from several different perspectives.

Medical Perspective

An individual's health condition is the primary determinant of the type of care required. In your mother's case, she is an amputee and suffers from vascular dementia, needing assistance for changing due to incontinence. These health concerns necessitate professional nursing home care. A comprehensive health evaluation by a medical professional can help clarify her care needs and suggest potential alternatives for care.

Financial Perspective

Nursing homes can be expensive, and not every family can afford these costs out-of-pocket. In these cases, aid such as Medicaid can be crucial. However, Medicaid has eligibility requirements related to income and assets, which can complicate matters. Consulting a financial advisor or elder law attorney can provide clarity on how to navigate these financial considerations and preserve as much of the elder's assets as possible.

Legal Perspective

Legal issues surrounding elderly care can involve topics such as guardianship, estate planning, elder rights, and Medicaid planning. For instance, your query is related to the legal implications of unpaid bills in a nursing home setting. To ensure your family's rights and interests are protected, consulting with an elder law attorney can provide legal insight into your situation.

Emotional Perspective

The transition to a nursing home can be emotionally challenging for all involved. The elder may feel a loss of independence, and family members may experience guilt or sadness. It is essential to acknowledge these feelings and consider seeking the support of a counselor or therapist to navigate this emotional terrain.

Social Perspective

Lastly, it's crucial to consider the social implications of this transition. Social interactions and activities contribute significantly to an elder's quality of life. When selecting a nursing home, consider the social environment and activities offered to ensure your mother can stay engaged and connected with others.

Understanding and addressing these perspectives comprehensively is crucial in making the best decision for your mother's care. Again, remember that resources like Find the Right Lawyer and Ask a Free Legal Question can be very helpful in your situation.

Legal Disclaimer

This response is intended to provide general information and is not legal advice. No attorney-client relationship has been created through this communication. Always consult an attorney for legal advice in your particular situation.

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