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I am trying to find additional money to help pay for my brother's assisted living bills. He has vascular dementia and Alzheimer's Disease. He also has Major Depressive Disorder. He is medically eligible for Medicaid, but I would have to move him to the skilled nursing portion of his care facility to apply for Medicaid. He would have to move out of his comfortable room into the hospital ward-like beds of skilled care. His clinical depression is eased somewhat by the pleasant surroundings of his assisted living room. If he moves to the clinic-like skilled nursing section, I'm concerned that his depression would increase and his decline from his dementia would only get worse. I am his financial POA, and I need an additional $1,600 a month added to his social security and pension to keep him in his assisted living room. I have been dipping into his savings to pay the current bills, but his money will soon run out. I am 70 years old and retired with health problems of my own and have no assets I can use to pay my brother's bills. I am considering using GoFundMe to do fundraising for my brother. Has anyone gone this route? Any suggestions or opinions? Thanks very much.

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A nice try, but why would expect other people to pay for your brother's care when other people need their money for their own and their own family's care?
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If he qualifies for Medicaid you need to move him into a nursing home. My elder attorney advised me to be sure I can self pay several months at a nursing home. That way you can choose the NH. Otherwise if he has no money left but his SS ...good luck in even getting him into one. I took his advise and when my mom only had about $27000 I place her in a NH I was referred to by her Hospice nurse . that paid for 3 months. She then was able to stay there while she was Medicaid pending. I applied for Medicaid when she only had $5000 left. It took Medicaid 5.5 months to approve. She was just approved this past week. They will go back to 11-11-21 and back pay the facility. I know this isn't the ideal decision for you. But sometimes you just have to do what is financially in yours and his best interest. Good luck.❤
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Besides being taxable, wouldn't a GoFundMe or similar program interfere with your brother's eligiblity for Medicaid if he needs it? Realistically, you are likely to cover a month or two but not more with solicited donations. I have been asked to contribute to community members in financial trouble. I am happy to help the first time, less so when it happens repeatedly. Meaning you will also lose friends if you go this route.
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If he’s eligible for Medicaid WHY would you do a go fund me? Don’t you think it’s insulting to expect others to pay for his care so he can be more “ comfortable”? Really ??? His care will be paid for by Medicaid. I just don’t get it . There are people with NO help out there. Sounds selfish but just my opinion.
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Becky04489 Mar 25, 2022
If he's on Medicaid which is publicly funded by taxes, why give to a Go Fund Me so he can have a nicer room. Seems selfish to me too.
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Relying on a GoFundMe campaign is akin to hoping to hit the lottery jackpot. To have any hope of raising a significant amount you'd need a wide reach and a compelling story, so that means a lot of publicity, a large network of supportive family and friends, and a situation that demonstrates true catastrophic need that no other funding source can help.

Unfortunately, not using Medicaid because you don't want to move your brother to skilled nursing isn't going to fly. Taxpayers will already pay for his care with Medicaid, yet you're asking for even more.

It won't work.
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My mom has a retirement coming in at around $2400 per month. Her assisted living/memory care is over $4,000. We pull from her savings and a small inheritance my grandma left to her two years ago to pay the difference which is $1600. I have been paying for my moms incidentals for the last ten years. Toilet paper, shampoo, soap, socks, underwear, haircuts, etc... I did that hoping to preserve moms savings for as long as possible so that she could afford the AL. She will run out of savings later this year. We will need to apply for Medicaid and create a Millers trust with an elder lawyer. She will need to move to a facility that accepts Medicaid. The Millers trust is a way to funnel the money mom does have coming in to the nursing home and Medicaid will hopefully pay the difference. I don't want to move mom from the private pay memory care, but we do not have a choice. I also dread managing the trust and the flaming hoops that I am sure Medicaid will make us jump through.

I feel like a GoFundMe page would not be reliable or consistent to rely upon for his care. I wish I had a better answer for you and for me. He needs to apply to Medicaid.

People think that things get easier as you get older, but they really don't!
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I would start looking for another place that would be suited for him and takes Medicaid after so long of self paying.
many familes
are in the same boat, start looking now and ask the financial questions.
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As a number of people have suggested, your best alternative, unfortunately, is to enroll him in Medicaid for long term nursing care. Keep in mind, when you do, Medicaid only pays for multiple bed rooms. If the facility is older and has an exemption that usually means 3 beds to a room. A newer facility has to meet a higher standard of 100sf per person plus 6sf for storage. Once he's on Medicaid, he could not receive any money from a go fund me source if it went toward his housing, food, or medical expenses; this is illegal. People can only pay expenses that are not in these categories. Also, I doubt you could get people to contribute on an on-going basis even if it were legal. Medicaid pays about $200/day so you'll find the level of service very inadequate. Be prepared to fight everyday to have his needs taken care of. I know - I've been an advocate for my brother in a nursing home paid by Medicaid in California for over 3 years. It's brutal. There are no good alternatives. Good luck.
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Just FYI, you cannot do both, GoFundMe and Medicaid.
I think you may know that.

If you are considering using charity, it may be ethical to spend down his assets before asking for help.

People who would donate might not feel like supporting him in the better room.

Sorry it has come to this, but I think applying for medicaid will keep him with a roof over his head.
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The intent of GoFundMe or other crowdfundraisers is to assist to remedy an immediate problem - traveling to dr appts because a family member has cancer, medical expenses for a treatment, dog get hit by car and family can't afford the vet bill, funeral (and funerals can be questionable).

You say you are 70. Assuming most of your friends and family in same age group, how many of them are going to be willing to donate each month to cover 1600 in a housing expense...that brother could get for nothing. Many of your friends (and friends of friends) are in the same predicament at this point in their life. They are running out of money to continue living in AL and have to go to the Medicaid NH bed. AL is for people who have amassed some wealth that will last throughout their life to accommodate the AL facility. Even those with wealth can have health that goes down hill and they need more care than AL will do. Those people end up hiring outside help to do what AL won't do.

I donate to many gofundme accounts based on what I think is reasonable. An example is a family trying to raise $20-25K for a funeral when the story says they left behind small children. The survivng spouse is going to need some financial help ongoing after the funeral to figure out how to survive on one income. The living want the big 'going out' funeral, perhaps as a show of how much they loved their person, however that much money is just going down in the hole with the person they are burying and they will still need help for the living family. It's not necessary to rent the funeral chapel, the family car or other things from the funeral home. Hold the entire service at a church or the cemetery. Only do the basics at the funeral home. The extravaganza funerals, when a family has to learn to live with out the contributions from the deceased, are those I decline. I'm not trying to sound hard hearted at all.

I just don't see you would ever be able to raise 1600 from your friends and family on a monthly basis. Not when many of them are probably running out of money for AL care and having to make the same NH bed move for their own loved ones.

Perhaps you could go talk with the facility to explain your fears. While he may have to move to another area to get the Medicaid bed, perhaps they can keep him engaged with the same activities in the old area. The money for the gofundme will be designated (by your own words when you post it) for your brother's care --- this would be income for your brother. It could raise issues for Medicaid (maybe, maybe not) and a question to ask an atty before you step into that mess.
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