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no insurance -suggestions please

Posts: 1154
Joined: Jun 2010

My MIL never had a job so she has never contributed to SSI. My FIL is screwed up from nam and never had a conventional job. He has an at home business repairing pianos. To my knowledge, he proabaly hasn't contributrd to SSI. Both have no insurance (my FIL) has benefits thru the VA hospital. They own a house, but struggle financially. Anyone have. Any suGgestions about handling there future? Is there assistance with mortgages and healthcare out there? I doubt they will be able to cover the 20 percent not cvered by Medicare.

Faithful_Angel's picture
Posts: 88
Joined: May 2011

Even if they never worked they have SSDI....I think it stands for Social security supplemental disability or something to that affect. If they qualify for disability.. and if not there are a million programs out there to help out. Contact human services in your area.. The American Cancer Society is a good source of information on programs as well. And Hospice, the social workers are so knowledgeable, even if hospice is not needed they will talk to you and help direct you in the right direction. Hope this helps a little

Lelia's picture
Posts: 98
Joined: Jun 2011

I'm not aware that Medicare pays only 20% in any case but especially not cancer. Anecdotally, a recent garden variety cancer care bill totaling $1136 left just $72 for patient-pay, Medicare paid the rest. That's been very typical, YMMV but very possibly you'll be surprised how much Medicare covers for those over 65.

Have you or your wife reached out to your MIL's place of worship, the local ACS, and the social worker at the hospital?

Posts: 1154
Joined: Jun 2010

Thanks. I meant 20 percent not covered by medicare. They own a house, so my fear is that they have too many assets to get anything.

Posts: 39
Joined: May 2011

Ok, since your FIL gets his care through the VA, much like my husband, I'd go there first. If he's "messed up" from his time in service (PTSD/physical disabilities) he can apply for Service Connected Veterans Compensation, if he was never in combat BUT served during wartime and is disabled (by VA standards, not the same as SSI/SSDI) he can apply for a "Veterans' Pension" IF he meets the income restrictions (home and vehicle are excluded from the means test to get C&P, so being a homeowner shouldn't have an adverse effect. if found eligible for either benefit, he will get a stipend for your MIL as his dependent (provided he is over 30% disabled)and if she needs care there is an additional stipend for aid and attendence to a dependant of a Veteran, if he is 100% Service Connected disabled, your MIL can get CHAMPVA which is additional insurance that is a part of his entitlement as a Service connected Veteran, so there are no pre-existing condition exeptions AFAIK.
If there is a more immediate financial need, they can look into taking out a reverse mortgage on their home, BUT I HIGHLY advise talking to an attorney/financial planner PRIOR to doing so to make sure they are not setting themselves up for tax liabilities.
Also, check with MEDICAID for their county. Depending on their resources, they may be eligible now, or be able to structure a medicaid spend-down to facilitate eligibility. I know we did that for my Dad back in the mid 90's, and he owned a nice home and had some savings, but it's governed by both State and federal regulations that have changed since then, so looking into it LOCALLY is your best bet there.

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