Your dad is getting older, and his healthcare needs and costs are getting out of hand. Have you looked into Medi-Cal? It could be the answer he needs to ensure he gets the care he needs and doesn’t make money-saving decisions that jeopardize his health.
What Is Medi-Cal?
Medi-Cal is a health insurance plan available to people 65 or older or who meet other criteria, usually income-based. Medi-Cal benefits help cover the cost of hospital and routine medical care, prescription medications, emergency care, rehabilitative and habilitative care and equipment, lab services, dental care, vision care, and mental health services.
With Medi-Cal coverage, if your dad needs long-term care services, it’s also covered in many situations. Suppose he has a stroke and needs long-term care while recovering. Medi-Cal helps with personal care services and skilled nursing care. It can also cover transportation to medical and dental appointments if he doesn’t have another option.
Does Your Dad Qualify?
There are two Medi-Cal plans. One provides low-cost medical and dental care coverage, which requires people to pay their “Share of Cost” or SOC for the care they receive. The other offers free medical and dental care. To qualify for either, your dad must be a resident of California.
MAGI coverage is income-based and available for people younger than 65. If your dad is 65 or older or has a qualifying disability, he may qualify for NON-MAGI. NON-MAGI requires your dad to list the assets he holds. That includes housing, cars, bank accounts, etc. He may qualify for Medi-Cal if he has other health insurance.
The income requirements for Medi-Cal are typically $1,584+ for an individual or $2,126+ for a couple. There are a few exceptions for those who are blind. If your dad qualifies for SSI, he automatically qualifies for Medi-Cal.
Asset requirements are more likely to be something your dad will face during the application process. He cannot have more than $130,000 in assets (individual) or $195,000 (couple). Navigating these rules can be tricky. That’s why many families find it easier to start by consulting with a Medi-Cal lawyer.
How Does He Get Started?
Your dad can fill out the online application form or call a Medi-Cal advisor. Once approved for Medi-Cal, make sure your dad reapplies each year. It’s required if he’s going to stay in the program. He has to get approved first, and for that, you may want to contact an attorney that specializes in Medi-Cal applications.
An elder law attorney who specializes in Medi-Cal applications and planning is a great person to advocate for your dad. The application process can be confusing, but with a Medi-Cal attorney helping, your dad is less likely to get denied. Call a Medi-Cal attorney to schedule a consultation.
The Law Office of James Dolenga offers SSDI, SSI, Estate Planning, Elder Law & Medi-Cal Planning in Huntington Beach, California. Call today for your legal consultation. (866) 772-5299
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