Medicaid is a government health insurance program available to low-income families, children, pregnant women, the elderly and the disabled. According to the Clark County, Nevada website, the Division of Welfare and Supportive Services defines the eligibility guidelines for receiving Medicaid in Nevada. In addition to the income limits, there are also asset restrictions.
Income limits vary depending on the eligibility group, but can't exceed a certain percentage of the Federal Poverty Level, which varies based on household size. In 2014, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services lists the annual poverty level for a household of one as $11,670. For two people in the household, the FPL is $15,730. Low income adults with children can't have a household income more than 138 percent of the Federal Poverty Level based on household size. For example, a parent with a child is limited to an annual income of $21,707.40. For children under the age of 19, the FPL limit is up to 205 percent of the FPL.
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Households are also limited to no more than $2,000 in countable assets for an individual and $3,000 for a couple. Certain assets are exempt, including your home, car, furniture, household goods and pre-paid funeral and burial arrangements. Countable assets include cash, checking and savings accounts, certificates of deposit, stocks, bonds and mutual funds. Additional property other than your primary home, such as a rental or vacation home, is countable as well. If you meet the income limits but exceed the asset requirements, you may be required to spend down your assets before you can receive Medicaid coverage. According to Nolo, a "spend down" means reducing your assets. There are many ways to spend down countable assets, including using liquid accounts to pay medical bills or purchase exempt assets such as a car or new furniture.
- Clark County Nevada: Social Service - FAQ
- Nevada Department of Health and Human Services - Division of Welfare and Supportive Services: Medical Programs
- Benefits.gov: Nevada Medicaid
- Corporation for Enterprise Development: Lifting Asset Limits in Public Benefit Programs
- Nolo: Safe Ways to Spend Down Your Assets to Qualify for Medicaid
- Forbes: The Medicaid Look Back Period Explained
- U.S. Department of Health and Human Services: 2014 Poverty Guidelines