Medicaid & Holocaust Reparations: Know Your Legal Rights!
Federal Medicaid law protects Holocaust reparations from being considered as countable resources or countable income when applying for Medicaid assistance. It is suggested that reparations not be commingled with other assets but rather, kept in a separate account. This will make it easier to get through the Medicaid application process. It can be difficult to trace the source of assets if documentation is discarded so it is a better practice to segregate these assets. If a holocaust survivor had not previously segregated reparations from other assets it is not too late to take this step. Documentation from Germany can be translated into English and used as supporting information to exempt the monies.
Since the reparations can grow in value, a holocaust survivor may want to consider having a probate attorney prepare a trust agreement specifically for the reparations. The reparations account (or trust) are exempt from Medicaid’s estate recovery efforts at the demise of the Medicaid recipient. The trust can be drafted in such a way that the reparations avoid the probate process and can maintain privacy in the family (as well as avoid a guardianship).
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There are several community agencies to assist Holocaust survivors and the “next generation” such as: Alpert Jewish Family & Children’s Service; JFS of Broward County; Ruth Rales Jewish Family Service.
This communication is not to be considered legal advise or the establishment of an attorney client relationship.