Spending Down/Gifting Assets

An individual whose personal property is above the Medi-Cal resource limit may spend down to $2,000. Resources must be reduced to the property limit for at least one day during the month in which a person is establishing eligibility. Giving away resources may render a person ineligible for a period of time running from the date of the transfer.

Penalties for transferring or gifting away assets only apply if a Medi-Cal beneficiary or applicant enters a nursing home. If an applicant lives at home and gifts away property, the penalty will not apply. A Medi-Cal applicant can give away assets and still be eligible for Medi-Cal depending on when the asset was transferred, the value of the transfer and whether he or she enters a nursing home. The transfer rules are triggered when a person enters a nursing home and applies for Medi-Cal. The Medi-Cal application will ask if the applicant transferred any assets within the 30 months prior to the date of the application. The transfer rules apply only to non-exempt (countable) assets.

A transfer of non-exempt assets can result in a period of ineligibility.


©2011 Phillip M Flanigan Attorney at Law