Medicaid is a government program that pays for both medical costs and long-term care costs. Medicaid is a “means-tested” government program, which means that to qualify you must meet strict financial requirements as well as other eligibility requirements. Upon application, a Medicaid caseworker will evaluate the individual’s ability to function independently and their need for assistance with ADLs. Those applicants who need more assistance will have a higher priority for eligibility in the Medicaid system.
Oregon is an income cap state, which means that Oregon applies a limit on the amount of income that an individual receives, and that amount must be no higher than Oregon’s limit at the time of application for Medicaid. Currently, an individual’s income is limited to $2,250 per month in order to qualify for Medicaid.
Oregon also has a limit on the amount of resources a person can have on hand. In Oregon, a single individual may retain no more than $2,000 in assets in order to qualify for Medicaid. The limits for a married couple are evaluated differently because the well-spouse (often referred to as the community spouse) may retain between $24,720 and $123,600 of assets. The amount of assets that the well-spouse may retain depends on the total value of assets the married couple owned when one spouse begins long-term care for a 30-day continuous period.
However, certain assets are exempt and will not be counted by Medicaid including the following:
Your personal residence (with an equity limit of $572,000) is exempt if you are planning to return to your residence, or if a spouse, child under 21, or a disabled person resides in it;
Personal property including household furnishings, furniture, clothing, jewelry, etc.;
A pre-paid burial fund with a value under $1,500;
The value of life insurance policies if the total face value of the policies is under $1,500.