an elderly woman with a gray haired bun is wearing a dark dress and in leaning on her hand looking worried

Is it hopeless?

You’re looking for help with the high cost of care, but help is hard to find. Everyone you talk to tells you, “There’s nothing you can do. You’re out of time.” You’ve heard it all…
  •  You just have to pay the nursing home bill yourself until the money is gone.
  • Now that mom is in the nursing home they’re going to take the house.
  • Your Medicaid application got denied, so you just have to spend the rest of the money.
  • Title 19 is only for poor people.  You would be able to get help from the state if you had ‘enjoyed’ your retirement funds instead of saving them.
No wonder you’re feeling frustrated and hopeless. You should be able to take care of your spouse or parent without losing everything. It’s not fair that someone can work responsibly their whole life to build a nestegg, just to lose it all paying a nursing home.


Spousal Support

Maybe you’ve been waiting out a diagnosis and providing care at home. Maybe a sudden health crisis has forced your hand. Whatever the cause, making the decision to move your spouse to a nursing home is emotionally draining.
Whether your spouse recently moved to a nursing home or has been receiving skilled care for awhile now, if you’re worried about how to make ends meet while paying a nursing home bill, we can help.

Care for a Parent

All you want to do is make sure Mom or Dad gets the best possible care, but you can’t shake the feeling that spending $7,500 or more on the nursing home each month is going to consume everything they’ve worked so hard to save. 
We can help you navigate the maze of regulations to both protect the nest egg and get access to the help you parent needs.

Problem Assets

The nursing home filed a Title 19 application on the day you signed the admission papers, but your application was denied. Now you’re afraid that the $91,000 annual nursing home bill will destroy your life savings and leave you with no way to support yourself.  Fortunately, a denial doesn’t have to be the end of the story. Our team speaks fluent “Medicaid” and can help deal with the “problem assets” to get your application back on track toward eligibility.

Step One

In order to make a plan, you need to see things clearly. Through our initial Vision Meeting, you gather the necessary financial information, determine what options you have available to pay for care, and identify any areas where you need clarity.

Step Two

With a clear vision in mind, we can identify any problem assets and develop solutions that will accomplish your vision. We’ll present you with options and make recommendations to help you narrow down the best result. With your final selections in hand, you’ll have a plan tailored to meet your needs.

Step Three

After you choose the essential elements of your plan, we’ll take every step necessary to help implement each of those elements – from specific instructions for each spenddown task to drafting a Miller Trust to preparing and submitting your Medicaid application.


Ethical Advice

A financial advisor or CPA can help you find tax breaks while saving for retirement by following the instructions in the tax code. Medicaid Planning with Huizenga Law helps you protect the home and life savings by following the Medicaid rules and not by exploiting loopholes.

Open Communication

Because Medicaid eligibility depends on precise timing, we’ll keep you in the loop as things happen. The Medicaid rules are as confusing as the tax code, so we’ll answer every question and explain every nuance in terms you can understand.

A Plan That Works

Let’s face it: there’s a lot of misinformation and bad advice out there. How do you know who to listen to? With more than a decade of experience in elder law and Medicaid planning, we stand behind our Medicaid Planning because you deserve to feel confident that your plan will work.

Return on Investment

The whole reason you came to us for help was to save money. We promise to be up front about our pricing and we’ll never nickel and dime you with hourly billing. Plus, we’ll help make sure your monthly nursing home payment goes down. You invest a little in our services up front to save a lot every month.

MEDICAID on the blog

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Iowa Medicaid Planning

Long-term Care: Counting the Cost

Long-term care is expensive, and these costs only continue to increase as baby boomers age. Although the range varies depending on where you live, according to the Genworth Cost of Care Study for 2020, the national median annual cost of a private nursing home room is $105,852 with a 3% annual increase projected. Here in Iowa, the average cost of a private nursing home room is just over $85,000. With improved medical care, the average life span of adults also is increasing; this translates into more years of care at increasingly higher rates. Without some sort of financial assistance, these costs could be financially devastating. In fact, your entire life savings could be quickly depleted within a few years of needing long-term care. This is where Medicaid can help.

Medicaid is a joint federal and state program to assist those with low income and limited resources. While Medicare provides very limited long-term care coverage, Medicaid is much more extensive. However, because of its restrictions, qualifying for Iowa Medicaid can be extremely difficult. But paying for a nursing home without it could be all but impossible.

The Medicaid Maze

medicaid crisis planning

Although Medicaid requirements vary from state to state, they all share one common element: complexity. Each state specifies a maximum allowed income for individuals and couples in order to qualify for Medicaid. Also, the applicant’s total assets cannot exceed a specified amount called the Individual Resource Allowance, which is consistently very low, often as low as $2,000*. Although certain possessions, like your home and automobile, may be “exempted” for purposes of determining Medicaid eligibility, this figure is still alarming. If the applicant is married, the process becomes more complicated. For the recipient to qualify for Medicaid in any state, the applicant’s spouse can keep only half the couple’s assets up to a Maximum Community Spouse Resource Allowance of $130,380. So, if a couple has more than $260,760** in assets, they must “spend down” to all but $2,000 (or whatever the state Individual Resource Allowance is) for the applicant and $130,380 for the spouse.

What can you do if the value of your “non-exempt” assets exceeds the $130,380* Maximum Community Spouse Resource Allowance? If you give your extra assets away, which seems like an obvious choice, you will encounter greater problems. Violating this “Transfer Penalty Rule” could disqualify you from receiving Medicaid for months or years, depending on how much you gave away.

If your need for nursing home care is immediate, time is not something you can afford to lose. Why? If you wait too long and your non-exempt assets fall below the maximum $130,380 limit, then the applicant’s spouse can only keep half of what is left … with $26,076** as the Minimum Community Spouse Resource Allowance. In other words, $130,380** truly is the Maximum Community Spouse Resource Allowance!

The Iowa Medicaid Qualification Process = Legally Protecting the Maximum Amount the Law Allows

This is only a brief and oversimplified review of a few Medicaid rules, of which there are many more. Navigating them on your own could be a nightmare at best and subject you to penalties at worst. Fortunately, though, our Medicaid Planning attorney can guide you through the Medicaid maze and advise you throughout the Iowa Medicaid application process, ensuring that you retain the maximum income and total assets allowed by law.



Seek appropriate counsel with a Medicaid planning attorney at Huizenga Law before you apply for and seek to qualify for Iowa Medicaid. Our legal team can give you – and your family – peace of mind during a difficult and uncertain time. When dealing with Medicaid, legal advice is something you cannot afford to go without.

* The Individual Resource Amount varies from state to state. These numbers were updated January 8, 2021, for Iowa Medicaid.

** Since these amounts (e.g., the “Community Spouse Resource Allowance,” etc.) are adjusted annually, these numbers may vary slightly depending on when the most recent figures are released.

Ethan literally wrote the book on nursing home Medicaid for married couples.

Click below to get your free copy of It’s Not Too Late: The Ultimate Guide to Nursing Home Medicaid for the Stressed-Out Husband or Wife.

Click below to get your free copy of It’s Not Too Late: The Ultimate Guide to Nursing Home Medicaid for the Stressed-Out Husband or Wife.