Medicaid Estate Recovery

If someone aged 55 or older receives Medicaid benefits, the State of Ohio is entitled to collect against the property that remains titled in that person's name at death.

If we've done spend-down, how much can be left anyways?

If spend-down is complete, there should be no more than $2,000 generally available for estate recovery. But sometimes, people forget about transferring exempt resources out of the name of the Medicaid applicant to the applicant's spouse. Or sometimes a Medicaid applicant dies while still owning his home but receives benefits. In these cases, Medicaid Estate Recovery can apply.

Are there exceptions?

Yes. The State will not collect against a home as long as the surviving spouse, children under 21, or children with disabilities reside in the home.

So Medicaid does take property?

Technically, yes, it can. But only after the Medicaid participant dies. So this only applies after Medicaid actually provides benefits—not before. Medicaid does not take any property as part of spend-down.

How much can the State recover?

The State can only recover the amount it paid for benefits. So, if it pays $40,000 for benefits and the participant's house sells for $90,000, the State can only recover the $40,000 and the remaining $50,000 can be paid to the family.