What does Medicaid consider to be your estate in Texas?

If you’re going through the Medicaid recovery process in Texas, it is important to know what is technically in the deceased party’s personal estate, at least in the eyes of Medicaid. This could be a bit different than you would naturally assume, though most of it is pretty straightforward.

To start with, you should know that only the items that are eligible for probate are going to count. That means that the following are usually going to be exempt:

— Proceeds that were obtained from an insurance policy.– IRA accounts and other types of personal retirement accounts.– Pensions given out by former employers.– Accounts held in banks or similar institutions that pay out when a person passes away.– Joint accounts.– Wealth that is held in mutual funds.

You may be thinking that wealth that is not kept in Texas, will also be exempt, but this is not always the case. The physical location of the wealth does not always matter, just so long as it is in the person’s name and technically within his or her estate.

Finally, you should know that a will cannot be distributed as long as there are any outstanding claims from the recovery process. This has to be taken care of first. Even big-ticket items, such as homes, could be claimed in some situations.

No matter where you are in this process, you need to know how all of the laws impact you in Texas. Be sure that you fully understand the claims, your rights and what you must do.

Source: Texas Department of Aging and Disability Services, “Medicaid Estate Recovery Program FAQs” Dec. 28, 2014