How Soon Do I Need To Report Any Changes Of Income Or Assets To Medicaid?

The Critical Importance of Promptly Reporting Changes to Medicaid

When you’re a beneficiary of Medicaid, staying compliant with the program’s guidelines is paramount, especially regarding changes in your income or assets. Here’s what you need to know about reporting such changes to ensure your benefits remain uninterrupted and you stay on the right side of the law.


Medicaid requires recipients to report any changes in income or assets within 10 days from the occurrence of the change. This includes adjustments in earnings, inheritance, sale or acquisition of assets, or any financial modifications.

Maintaining Eligibility

Accurate and timely reporting is essential to preserve your Medicaid eligibility.

Avoiding Penalties

Failure to report within the stipulated time frame can lead to fines, repayment of overpaid benefits, and even loss of coverage.


While the specific process can vary by state, changes are typically reported through your local Department of Social Services or directly to the Medicaid program. Many states also offer online reporting through their Medicaid websites.


Not reporting changes can lead to serious repercussions, including the possibility of being held liable for any benefits paid out based on inaccurate information.


Navigating Medicaid’s complexities can be challenging. Consulting with experts, like those at Utah Senior Planning, can provide invaluable assistance in understanding the rules, reporting changes correctly, and ensuring your benefits are protected.

Remember, keeping your Medicaid information up-to-date is crucial for your financial health and compliance with the program’s requirements. Always report any changes as swiftly as possible to avoid unnecessary complications.


What Is Cash Value Of A Life Insurance Policy?

Understanding the Cash Value of Life Insurance in Medicaid Planning

The cash value in a life insurance policy is a crucial element that accumulates over time, representing the savings portion of permanent life insurance policies like whole life or universal life. As premiums are paid, a part of them contributes to this cash value, growing a financial reserve that the policyholder can tap into under certain conditions.


When applying for Medicaid, the cash value of a life insurance policy is considered an asset. Given Medicaid’s asset limits for eligibility, a high cash value can affect one’s qualifications for benefits. This raises important considerations for Medicaid planning, where the goal is to align one’s assets within the permissible limits without compromising future security or eligibility.

Understanding Asset Limits

Recognizing how the cash value impacts your total assets in relation to Medicaid’s thresholds.

Exploring AvenueS

There are strategies to manage the cash value of your life insurance, such as loans, withdrawals, or converting to a policy with a lower or no cash value, all of which could potentially help in maintaining Medicaid eligibility.

Professional Guidance

Given the complexities, seeking advice from specialists like Utah Senior Planning is prudent. They can provide insights into the best course of action for your situation, whether it involves adjusting your life insurance policy or other asset-planning strategies.

Life insurance is more than just a death benefit; its cash value component requires careful consideration, especially in the context of Medicaid planning. By staying informed and consulting with professionals, you can make educated decisions that protect your assets and ensure your planning aligns with your long-term care needs and eligibility requirements.

Contact Us to explore how we can assist you in navigating the nuances of Medicaid and ensuring your comfort while receiving the care you deserve.


Can I Get On Medicaid With A House?

Owning a Home and Medicaid Eligibility: What You Need to Know

Navigating Medicaid eligibility can be complex, especially when you own a home. Many people wonder if owning property disqualifies them from receiving Medicaid benefits, particularly for long-term care. The good news is, owning a house may not prevent you from qualifying for Medicaid.

Exempt Assets

 Your primary residence is often considered an exempt asset under Medicaid rules, as long as its equity value falls below a certain threshold, which is updated annually in January.

Eligibility Factors

Medicaid considers various factors for eligibility, including income, other assets, and medical needs. Owning a home is just one piece of the puzzle.

Seek Professional Advice

Given the complexities surrounding Medicaid’s eligibility criteria, consulting with experts like those at Utah Senior Planning, who specialize in elder law and Medicaid planning, is invaluable. They can offer personalized advice tailored to your unique situation.


Understanding how your home affects your Medicaid eligibility is crucial for planning long-term care and ensuring your assets are managed wisely. Professional guidance can help you navigate these waters, making informed decisions that protect your interests and eligibility.

For those concerned about how home ownership impacts Medicaid eligibility, remember, you have options and resources available to guide you through this process.

Contact Us to explore how we can assist you in navigating the nuances of Medicaid and ensuring your comfort while receiving the care you deserve.


Why Do I Have To Provide All Of These Documents?​

Why Do I Have To Provide All Of These Documents?

As a company who helps individuals and families through the benefits approval process, we understand what it takes to get answers as quickly as possible. All of the applicant’s personal and financial information is required in order to determine their eligibility for any Medicaid programs. This same information will also need to be provided for any spouses or household members. Medicaid has a 5 year look back period which means that the caseworker could request documentation regarding any changes in assets or financial accounts during that time.

Commonly required documents are 6 Months of Bank Statements, Titles or Registrations for any Vehicles, Current Life Insurance Policy Documentation, Copies of any Funeral Plans, Current Income Benefit Statements, Property Tax Notices, Health Insurance Card Copies, and Copies of Legal Documents such as Powers of Attorney or Trusts. Additional documentation may also be required depending on what assets the applicant owns. 

Providing documents is essential to establish eligibility and ensure accurate determination of benefits. Preferably, if we can obtain the necessary documents beforehand, we will be able to get a good idea of what we need to do to determine eligibility, this will allow us to give you a more accurate quote of our fees, if any. 

Commonly required documents include: 
  • Identification documents (e.g., birth certificate or driver’s license/ passport (if not born in Utah), V.A. ID card, social security card) to verify your identity. 
  • Proof of income (e.g. social security statements, pension/ retirement (OPM, URS, etc.), V.A. benefit, disability income, mineral and oil rights and royalties, etc.) to assess income eligibility. – Financial statements (e.g., 6 months of bank statements (checking, savings, CDs, Money Market), IRA, 401k, annuity, stocks and bonds, property deeds) to determine asset eligibility. – Medical records (e.g.,Medicare card(s), health insurance card(s), verification of health insurance premiums) Front and back copies will be needed for any Medicare or other insurance card. 
  • Residency information (e.g., property tax notice, reverse mortgage docs, current mortgage/ home equity statement, utility bills, lease agreements). 
  • Life insurance policies (e.g., policy statement with current cash value, policy numbers, Face Value). 

These documents are required to accurately assess eligibility, determine the level of care needed, calculate the share of cost, and ensure compliance with program regulations. Additional documents may be required upon request.

Senior Real Estate

Real Estate In Your Senior Years

Real Estate In Your Senior Years

Option 1: Get The Home Ready and Sell It

Our team can help you or your loved ones put together a comprehensive plan regarding your real estate and how that real estate will play into your long term goals.  We can help you navigate step by step the transition into a new living arrangement that will best fit you or your loved ones needs.  
Here is an overview of our process:
  1. We will start with a free consultation where we will travel to your home and assess the condition of the property to see if it would make financial sense to make some changes, or if it would be most beneficial to sell the house in “as-is” condition.
  2. We will help you understand the value of the property and assess what if any needs you might have in preparing the house for sell. Examples of this could be someone to help organize, pack, clean out, or make repairs where it makes sense. If the property needs work, we will help you with our network of vendors who can provide different options when it comes to financing the work needed.
  3. We will put together a plan so that you understand every step of the process and how we can help you at each stage. Moving is a stressful time so let us help you take the stress out of it!
  4. Once we get to the point of listing the house for sell, we will help educate you as to the most effective marketing tools that will be used to help you achieve your real estate goals.

Option 2: Sell The Home As Is

If you’re in a situation where your mom needs to move into an assisted living facility or you need to help her get into rehab, it can be overwhelming. We understand.

You might live out of state and be trying to help her from across the country… or you might have a job or family that doesn’t allow you to spend hours on end going through every item that is in the house or clearing everything out, decluttering, organizing things or working with vendors or contractors to fix things.

There is so much to get done and not enough hours in the day to get them done!

There is an alternative if you need money sooner than later– selling is still an option. You can choose to not do anything to the home and have someone purchase the home as-is. No need to clear everything out, clean out the house, getting professional photographers involved…

There are always things you want to consider when deciding what option is right for you. But if it’s something that needs done fast without having time or energy for all those other tasks? Reach out! We can walk you through all of the steps of what that would look like and determine if this would be best for your family.


Can I Transfer My Assets To My Kids And Still Get On Medicaid?

Can I Transfer My Assets To My Kids And Still Get On Medicaid?

Getting on Medicaid can be a great resource for individuals with limited income and assets who need help paying for their medical expenses. However, it’s important to understand the asset limit requirements and the potential consequences of gifting assets before applying for Medicaid.

Medicaid requires individuals to have below a certain number of assets before they can qualify for the program. This can be challenging for some people, especially if they have assets that they wish to pass on to their loved ones. While giving assets away can seem like a good solution, Medicaid has strict guidelines about gift giving, and frowns upon this practice.

Medicaid argues that if you have the available means to pay for medical expenses out of pocket, you should do so before relying on the state to care for you. This makes sense, as Medicaid is meant to help those who are in financial need. If individuals are giving away their assets instead of using them to pay for medical care, it compromises the integrity of the program.

This is why it is crucial to discuss asset protection strategies with qualified Medicaid planning professionals before giving away assets. There are several ways to make gifts in a Medicaid-compliant way, so you can preserve your assets while still qualifying for the program. It’s important to know your options and explore all possibilities before making any decisions.

At Utah Senior Planning, we understand the desire to leave a legacy for your loved ones. That’s why we are dedicated to helping individuals who wish to preserve their assets through Medicaid planning strategies. With our well-thought-out plans and strategies, we enable our clients to achieve success and still qualify for Medicaid. 

If you are considering gifting assets or need help with Medicaid planning, don’t hesitate to contact us. We’re here to help you navigate the process and find the best solution for your specific situation.


Understanding the $45 Personal Needs Allowance in Medicaid: Balancing Care and Comfort

Why does Medicaid only give me $45?

In the intricate landscape of healthcare, a seemingly modest figure of $45 holds a significant role – it’s what’s known as the personal needs allowance within the realm of Medicaid. This allowance is a small but essential provision, designed to address the personal expenses of Medicaid recipients during their stay in a nursing home facility. While it might raise questions about its adequacy, delving deeper reveals a thoughtful balance that underlies its purpose.


The $45 personal needs allowance serves as a lifeline for Medicaid recipients, offering a bit of financial flexibility in the midst of a structured care environment. Think of it as a dedicated pool of funds, exclusively meant to cater to personal items and expenses that might not be covered by Medicaid. From a new set of clothing to toiletries, from occasional haircuts to connecting with loved ones through phone calls – this allowance steps in where Medicaid’s coverage ends.


Behind the scenes, the rationale for the personal needs allowance emerges as a delicate balancing act. It strives to strike equilibrium between granting a touch of personal freedom while ensuring that the primary focus remains on covering the substantial cost of nursing home care. This allocation beyond the personal needs allowance is typically allocated towards the overall cost of care, with Medicaid taking care of the remainder. While it may not appear as a substantial sum, it’s important to recognize that Medicaid shoulders the bulk of your nursing home expenses. This often translates to a substantial financial relief, potentially saving you thousands of dollars that would have otherwise been a direct out-of-pocket expenditure.


It’s undeniable that nursing facility care involves considerable expenses. Beyond room and board, the financial intricacies extend to compensate the salaries of an array of professionals – doctors, nurses, CNAs, housekeeping, and administration. The seemingly modest personal needs allowance, however, doesn’t tell the whole story. When you look beyond the surface, you realize that Medicaid steps in not only to cover these costs but also to embrace a comprehensive spectrum of medical care and necessities. From prescriptions to treatments, from doctors’ visits to hospital stays, and from rehabilitation to every form of essential care – Medicaid stands as a safeguard against unforeseen healthcare expenditures.


In the grand tapestry of healthcare, the $45 personal needs allowance reveals itself as a thread that intricately weaves care, comfort, and financial sensibility. While it may not be a princely sum, its purpose holds immense significance. It’s a testament to the delicate equilibrium between personal preferences and the weighty cost of care. So, as you contemplate this seemingly modest figure, remember that within it lies a spectrum of thoughtful considerations, a balance that’s poised to make a meaningful difference in your healthcare journey.

Contact Us to explore how we can assist you in navigating the nuances of Medicaid and ensuring your comfort while receiving the care you deserve.

Placement Services

Navigating the Path to Nursing Facility Admission: Your Comprehensive Guide

How do I get admitted into a nursing facility?

Every journey has its starting point, and for those seeking admission into a nursing facility, understanding the process is the first step toward ensuring the best care for yourself or your loved one. Whether you’re on the road to recovery after an accident or in need of ongoing care due to a chronic condition, the process of getting admitted into a nursing facility can seem like a complex maze. In this guide, we break down the typical steps involved, offering clarity and insights to make your journey smoother.

Typically, to get admitted into a nursing facility, you will follow these general steps: 

Hospital Stay or Doctor's Recommendation

Admittance to a nursing facility often begins with a hospital stay or a doctor’s recommendation. If you have experienced an accident or illness that requires rehabilitation or long-term care, a doctor may request your admission to a nursing facility. 

Consult with a Doctor

If you believe that you require care in a nursing facility, you can discuss your situation with your primary care doctor. They can assess your medical needs and determine if a nursing facility is appropriate for your recovery or ongoing care. 

Contact Nursing Facilities

Once it is determined that you need nursing facility care, you or your family can reach out to nursing facilities in your area. It is advisable to contact multiple facilities to inquire about availability, services offered, and admission criteria.

Provide Medical Information

The facility’s marketer or admissions coordinator will request medical information, history, and any necessary documentation to evaluate your eligibility and medical needs. This may include medical records, medical history, doctor’s notes, and insurance information.

Medical Acceptance

The nursing facility will review your medical information and assess whether they can provide the appropriate level of care you require. If they determine that they can meet your needs, you will be medically accepted for admission.

Financial Assessment

After medical acceptance, you will need to go through a financial process to determine the appropriate payer source for your care. This may involve providing financial information, insurance details, or discussing payment options.

Private Pay and Medicaid

If you have sufficient financial resources, you may choose to pay for the nursing facility care out of pocket. This is referred to as private pay. However, it is important to consider that the private pay rate of the facility can be quite expensive and overtime can deplete your assets. Instead of paying that out of pocket it may be worth it to speak with a Medicaid planner in order to ensure you are not having to pay more than you need and can protect your assets rather than letting them deplete overtime. If you meet the eligibility criteria, you may qualify for Medicaid, which can cover the costs of long-term care in a nursing facility. Utah Senior Planning, the building’s business offices, and the facility’s financial department can guide you through the Medicaid application process if needed. 

In the realm of health and care, each decision we make is an investment in our well-being and the well-being of our loved ones. Navigating the path to nursing facility admission is a significant step, one that can influence the quality of life and the level of care you or your family member receives.

At Utah Senior Planning, we’re committed to helping you navigate this journey with confidence. From the initial doctor’s recommendation to the final financial assessment, our experienced team is here to provide guidance, support, and expertise. We understand that each individual’s situation is unique, and we’re dedicated to tailoring solutions that cater to your needs and circumstances.

Whether it’s ensuring you have the right medical information ready, offering insights into Medicaid planning, or helping you find a nursing facility that aligns with your preferences, our goal is to make this process as seamless as possible. Your well-being is our priority, and we’re here to ensure that you or your loved one can access the care and comfort you deserve.

Feel free to reach out to us for any questions or assistance you may need on your journey toward nursing facility admission. Your path to compassionate care starts here.

Our Process

What are your fees?

What Are Your Fees?

At Utah Senior Planning, we believe that transparency and open communication are the keys to building strong relationships with our clients. That’s why we offer a free consultation to all of our clients, so that you can get a better understanding of how our services work and how we can help you with your case.

During this consultation, we’ll provide you with a brief overview of the services we offer and how they work: 

Medicaid Eligibility Consulting

Navigating the complexities of Medicaid eligibility can be overwhelming. Our Medicaid eligibility consulting services provide expert guidance to help you understand the requirements and maximize your chances of qualifying for this essential program. We’ll work with you to assess your situation, gather necessary documents, and guide you through the application process, ensuring you access the care you need.

Final Expense Planning

Ensure your loved ones are financially secure during a difficult time with our comprehensive final expense planning services. We understand the emotional challenges that come with end-of-life preparations. Our experts work closely with you to create a tailored plan that covers funeral costs, allowing your family to focus on honoring your memory without the burden of unexpected expenses.

Medicare Insurance

Make informed decisions about your healthcare coverage with our Medicare insurance services. Our experienced team will guide you through the intricacies of Medicare, helping you choose the right plan that aligns with your medical needs and budget. With our support, you can navigate the various options and feel confident in your Medicare choices.

Placement Services

Finding the right senior living option can be a daunting task. Our placement services take the stress out of this process by helping you identify the ideal assisted living or nursing facility for you or your loved one. We consider your preferences, medical requirements, and budget to ensure a smooth transition into a comfortable and supportive living environment.

New Choices Waiver

Access the support and services you need to remain in your home with our New Choices Waiver assistance. We’ll guide you through the application process, helping you understand your eligibility and the services available. Our goal is to empower you to age in place comfortably while receiving the necessary care.

Estate Planning

Protect your assets and ensure your wishes are carried out with our estate planning services. Our experienced professionals will work closely with you to create a comprehensive estate plan that includes wills, trusts, and other legal instruments. With a well-crafted estate plan, you can provide for your loved ones and minimize potential challenges in the future.

Veteran’s Benefits

If you’re a veteran or a surviving spouse, you may be eligible for valuable benefits. Our veteran’s benefits services help you navigate the application process and access the support you deserve. From healthcare benefits to pension programs, we’ll assist you in securing the benefits that honor your service.

Tax Preparation

Tax season doesn’t have to be stressful for seniors. Our tax preparation services cater to your specific financial situation, ensuring you maximize deductions and credits. Let us handle the paperwork so you can have peace of mind during tax time.

Senior Real Estate

Transitioning to a new living situation as a senior involves unique considerations. Our senior real estate services provide tailored solutions for selling or purchasing property. We understand the intricacies of senior living needs and work to ensure a seamless real estate experience.

We are happy to answer any questions you might have. We understand that every client is unique, and that’s why we take the time to get to know you and your situation before we make any recommendations.

When it comes to fees, we believe that honesty is the best policy. In most cases, fees are determined by the level of planning strategies that need to be implemented in order to get your case approved. If your case doesn’t require a significant amount of planning on our behalf, many times the facilities that we contract with will compensate us separately on your behalf and you will have no fees. (Utah Senior Planning is a private business that works in collaboration with care facilities and state caseworkers, we serve as an unbiased third party to ensure that the integrity of the Medicaid system is maintained while also helping clients take advantage of the state policies to help preserve assets).

However, if there are fees associated with our services, we make sure to let you know upfront during the consultation. We believe in being fully transparent about what we charge so that there are no surprises down the road.

We want you to feel confident in your decision to work with us, which is why we offer a no-pressure approach to our consultations. We’re here to provide you with the information you need to make an informed decision about your case.

Don’t hesitate to contact us to learn more about how we can help you with your situation. Our team of experienced professionals is here to guide you every step of the way.

Final Expense Planning

Pre-planning for Funeral and Funeral Expenses: Ensuring Peace of Mind for You and Your Loved Ones

Pre-planning for Funeral and Funeral Expenses: Ensuring Peace of Mind for You and Your Loved Ones

We want to touch on a topic that may seem uncomfortable but is incredibly important to address – pre-planning for burial coverage and managing burial expenses. By taking the time to pre-plan and consider the associated costs, you can provide your loved ones with peace of mind during a challenging time.

Pre-planning for burial coverage allows you to make decisions ahead of time, ensuring that your wishes are met and alleviating the burden on your family members. 

Here are some steps we can help you take to begin the pre-planning process:

Research Funeral Homes

Start by researching reputable funeral homes in your area. Look for establishments that offer personalized services, respectful facilities, and professional staff who will attend to your specific needs and wishes.

Determine Your Preferences

Consider the type of service you desire – whether it be a traditional funeral service, a memorial service, or a celebration of life. Reflect on whether you prefer burial or cremation, taking into account your personal beliefs and wishes.

Consider the Details

Think about the details of your service. Are there specific readings, music, or special requests you would like to include? By expressing these details in your pre-planning, you ensure that your service is a reflection of your unique life and legacy.

Inform Your Loved Ones

Once you have completed your preplanning, it is important to communicate your decisions to your loved ones. Let them know about your pre-planning arrangements and inform them where the necessary documentation is stored.

Managing burial expenses is another critical aspect of preplanning. By considering the following tips, you can help alleviate the financial burden on your family:

Shop Around

Research different funeral homes to compare prices and services. By doing so, you can ensure that you are receiving the best value for the services provided.

Prepay for Services

Many funeral homes offer the option to prepay for burial services. Prepaying provides peace of mind and protects against rising costs by locking in today’s prices

Consider Direct Burial or Cremation

Direct burial or cremation services often have lower costs compared to a full funeral service. This option can be worth considering if it aligns with your preferences.

Investigate Government Programs

Depending on your circumstances, government programs such as Social Security or veterans’ benefits may offer assistance in covering burial expenses. It is worth exploring these options to determine if you qualify.

Taking the time to preplan burial coverage and manage burial expenses is an act of love for your family and friends. By doing so, you can alleviate the emotional and financial burden they may face when making these arrangements during a difficult time.

If you have any questions or would like to get started pre-planning or navigating burial expenses, please do not hesitate to reach out to us. We are burial pre-planning experts and are here to support you every step of the way.