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3 things to do before you apply for Medicaid

If you require long-term medical care and cannot afford to pay for it or insurance, you may need Medicaid. You could have the desire to apply for Medicaid but feel like the process is confusing and intimidating. Indeed, the application process can be a little difficult to figure out on your own.

However, do not despair or procrastinate applying. You can submit your application and get the coverage you need when you have the right help. Here are a few guidelines to get you started:

1. Learn about eligibility requirements and asset limits

The following people receive assistance through Medicaid:

  • Elderly
  • Blind
  • Disabled
  • Pregnant women
  • Dependent children
  • Caretakers

In addition to falling into one of these categories, you must meet the financial criteria to secure Medicaid coverage. New Jersey has specific requirements in terms of your income and assets. You must make sure that you are below the threshold so you can qualify for health insurance under the Medicaid program.

2. Spend down, if necessary

If you exceed the income or asset limits, all hope is not lost. You may be able to qualify for coverage through a spend-down process. Some spend-down strategies include gifting or selling certain assets. Before you get rid of anything, make sure you get legal assistance to ensure that you follow state and federal laws and do not gid rid of more than is necessary.

3. Gather documents

The Medicaid application process requires you to have various documents. Get all these ready so that you are not denied coverage for a document omission:

  • Proof of citizenship
  • Birth certificate
  • Driver's license
  • Proof of income and assets
  • Proof of residence
  • Medical records
  • Health insurance information

There may be some additional documentation, but your elderly law attorney can advise you on any extra documents you may need.

Once you complete these three steps, you can officially begin your Medicaid application.

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