Katie L. Summers
Medicaid is a program that was created to subsidize the cost of long-term care. To be eligible for Medicaid, individuals must meet strict income and asset limitations. To meet these limitations, a growing number of individuals engage in Medicaid estate planning. To recoup some of the costs of Medicaid, the states are required to implement a Medicaid estate recovery program. There are certain mandated requirements, but the reach of the recovery program is primarily left to the discretion of the states. Pennsylvania recently contemplated expanding its Medicaid estate recovery program, but the proposed changes were not enacted. This Comment provides an overview of Medicaid estate recovery in Pennsylvania by exploring the background of Medicaid, Medicaid estate planning, and Medicaid estate recovery generally. In addition, this Comment examines the arguments for and against Medicaid estate recovery. Finally, this Comment recommends the creation of a system that expands Medicaid estate recovery in Pennsylvania, while retaining certain protections for the deceased Medicaid recipient’s heirs.
preferred citation: Katie L. Summers, Comment, Medicaid Estate Recovery: To Expand, or Not to Expand, That Is the Question, 118 Penn St. L. Rev. 465 (2013).