Public Benefits

Public benefits are usually means-tested welfare benefits for people who need assistance. Typically they are taken from general tax dollars, which is why they are treated differently from entitlement programs. Public benefits include:

Benefits you paid for through payroll deductions are entitlements. They include Medicare, Social Security Disability (SSDI), Social Security Retirement and Railroad Retirement.

Elder Law Attorneys and Special Needs Law Attorneys frequently use tools like special needs trusts or engage in Medicaid Planning to help older adults and individuals with special needs access public benefits. We’re still building this website, so if we haven’t answered your questions yet on one of our main pages or in a blog post, contact us at


    VA Aid & Attendance Benefit Rates for 2023

    The new Aid and Attendance enhanced pension rates for 2023 are: Surviving Spouse $1,432 Monthly / $17,184 per year Single Veteran $2,229 Monthly / $26,748 per year Married Veteran $2,642 Monthly / $31,704 per year Two Vets Married $3,536 Monthly / $42,432 per year If you qualify for these benefits, the VA will base your […]

    2023 Georgia Medicaid Eligibility

    Each year, most Medicaid eligibility limits are adjusted for inflation. The 2023 Georgia Medicaid income and resource limits are: SSI Medicaid: Income: $914 per month, Countable Resources: $2,000 QMB Medicaid: Income: $1,235 (100% FPL + $20), Countable Resources: $9,090 SLMB Medicaid: Income: $1,478 (120% FPL +$20), Countable Resources: $9,090 CCSP/EDWP/Nursing Home Income: $2,742; Applicant Resources: […]

    Pooled Trusts Currently Authorized to Provide Trust Services in Georgia

    As of this writing, the following pooled trusts are authorized by the Department of Community Health to provide trust services in Georgia: Georgia Community/Trust/Bobby Dodd Institute Anita Gardner Decatur, GA 404.809.2914 Anchor For Special Needs, Inc. Annie Warner Cincinnati, OH 844.526.2467 Advocates and Guardians for the Elderly & Disabled (AGED) Thad A. Joseph Longwood, FL 888-277-1826 The Center […]

    ABLE Accounts

    The Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act of 2013 (S. 313/H.R.647) was introduced in the 113th Congress by a bipartisan group of Congressional Champions that included Sens. Robert Casey, Jr. (D-PA) and Richard Burr (R-NC), and Reps. Ander Crenshaw (R-FL), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) and Pete Sessions (R-TX). The ABLE […]

    Spousal Impoverishment Standards By Year

    The Medicaid Spousal Impoverishment allowances are updated annually. Below are some of the annual allowance figures we’ve saved. The most current figures are usually posted here. 2023 2022 2021 2020 2019 2018 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 1998 – 2011

    2023 SSI and Spousal Impoverishment Standards

    The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services released the 2023 SSI and Spousal Impoverishment Standards. Among the highlights are the following: Community Spouse Resource Allowance: $148,620 Maximum Monthly Maintenance Needs Allowance: $3,715.50 Income Cap: $2,742 (used to deterine whether a QIT is needed) Individual SSI rate: $914

    Cash, Bank Accounts and Non-retirement Investments and Medicaid

    Cash and Accounts Monetary resources can typically be liquidated within 20 days. These include cash, savings accounts, checking accounts, money market accounts and the like. Medicaid always “counts” monetary assets when determining Medicaid eligibility. Specifically, 20 C.F.R § 416.1201(b) provides: “Liquid resources are cash or other property which can be converted to cash within 20 […]

    Government Bonds and Medicaid

    Government Bonds are debt instruments issued by a government entity. The most common form of government bond owned by a Medicaid applicantis U.S. Savings Bonds. Savings bonds are not transferrable. They can only be sold back to the government. If they are owned solely by the applicant or the applicant’s spouse, they are countable. However, […]

    Vehicles and Medicaid

    General Rule One vehicle of any value is exempt. If the applicant has more than one vehicle, then the most valuable vehicle will be exempt and other vehicles will count toward the $2,000 resource limit. In Georgia, “Automobile” means any vehicle used for transportation. These include cars, trucks, motorcycles, golf carts, animal-drawn vehicles and animals. […]

    POMS Provisions Regarding Property Rights

    POMS SI 01120.010 provides that an individual must have some form of ownership interest in property in order for the property to be considered a resource. [For presumably liquid resources (SI 01110.305), assume that the person whose name is shown as owner owns the entire resource. If more than one owner is shown, assume that […]

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