Family is important.
Your parents are aging.
As such, they may require long-term care.
Unfortunately, what if they cannot afford to self-pay for their care and even end up on Medicaid to pay for their care?
What happens then?
According to a recent KSFY.com article titled “Little-known law forces adult children to pay for nursing home care for parents,” there are 29 states where adult children could be required to pay.
These 29 states have “filial laws” on their books.
Essentially, the laws require family members to pay for the care of certain relatives, including parents.
What if you are estranged from your parents?
You could still be sued to pay.
What if you have received no assets from your parents?
You would still be responsible.
However, it should be noted that these laws are most often enforced against children who have received assets from parents before being admitted to nursing home care.
What is the purpose of these laws?
The laws decrease nursing home losses in caring for patients, not to mention depletion of government (taxpayer) Medicaid coffers.
By receiving payment, the nursing homes are able to provide better care for their residents and the states bleed a little less red ink.
The basic notion here is personal responsibility and family responsibility.
In fact, having "Uncle $ugar" in Washington, D.C. take the place of family members caring for family members is a recent phenomenon in our culture.
Opponents of these laws claim they shift a weighty burden onto adult children.
Not sure if these laws could apply to you?
Work with an experienced elder law attorney to better understand the laws or your state and the options available for you and your parents.
By the way, Kansas and Missouri do not have filial responsibility laws.
Reference: KSFY.com (December 20, 2018) “Little-known law forces adult children to pay for nursing home care for parents”