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February 7, 2019. Category: News

My spouse is in a nursing home, can I still afford to keep my home?

Written by: Christian Horde, J.D., LL.M. 

In Florida, the Medicaid program for nursing homes requires the institutionalized spouse to pay almost all of their income to the nursing facility. Residents are allowed to keep a personal needs allowance, which is currently $130.00 per month, but the remaining income is typically owed to the nursing home as a patient responsibly.  

Medicaid does allow for the institutionalized spouse’s income to be given to the community spouse if the community spouse does not receive enough income to cover certain living expenses. This is referred to as the "minimum monthly maintenance needs allowance” (MMMNA). However, the most a spouse can receive under this policy is currently $3,161.00.

What if the expenses are higher for the well spouse at home?

Questions and concerns we often hear are:

  1. Do we have to get divorced if my spouse is in the nursing home?
  2. Will I have to give up my home?
  3. How will I have enough to pay for my own prescriptions/other expenses?

The solution is: Spousal Support Unconnected with Dissolution of Marriage.

This is not a divorce, but rather a legal process in which all of the ill spouse’s income will be paid to the well spouse via court order.

With the help of The Elder Law Center of Kirson & Fuller, a spouse may receive a court order directing most or even all of the income to the well spouse so they can afford their expenses and stay at home.

The Elder Law Center of Kirson & Fuller has successfully saved homes from going into foreclosure, while allowing the ill spouse to receive the care they need. Our experienced elder law attorneys are well-versed with the complex Medicaid rules and we are happy to assist you.