In Mercury News Article, Michael Gilfix Offers Perspective on Protecting Estates from Medi-Cal Asset Seizure

Law Firm Newswire



Palo Alto, CA (Law Firm Newswire) September 9, 2014 – Estate planning attorney Michael Gilfix addressed growing concerns about Medi-Cal asset recovery in a recent article in the San Jose Mercury News.

Last week, a bill designed to scale down Medi-Cal’s asset recovery programs was passed unanimously by the California State Assembly. Nonetheless, many in the state — including Sacramento insiders — fear that Governor Jerry Brown may veto the bill, according to the Mercury News.

But Gilfix pointed out that there are still practical solutions for those who wish to access Medi-Cal benefits while preserving their estates, even if Governor Brown does choose to veto the bill.

As Gilfix states in the article, many seniors can protect homes and other assets against Medi-Cal reimbursement claims through careful estate planning. Those who intend to enroll in Medi-Cal need to take a proactive approach to estate planning in order to enact this strategy.

The Mercury News reported that Governor Brown’s budget advisers are encouraging a veto in order to avoid potential revenue losses for the state. Sacramento insiders told the Mercury News that an override of any veto by the state legislature is unlikely.

All states are required by federal law to recover the costs from any long-term benefits seniors received from Medicaid (Medi-Cal in California). According to the Mercury News, California recovers other costs besides the required long-term care costs.

Governor Brown must decide to sign or veto the bill by September 30. The State Senate and Assembly are not currently in session, and they would not be able to respond to a veto until they reconvene in January.