Receiving Class Action Settlement Money Can Threaten Your Needs-Based Benefits
If you are receiving any type of needs-based government assistance including SSI, Medi-Caid (California Medi-Cal), Welfare, Food Stamps, Section 8 Housing, In-Home Support Services, Utility Payment Assistance and subsidized health insurance (Obamacare), your benefits could be reduced or eliminated when you receive money from the NFL Concussion Settlement.
It is difficult to qualify for needs-based benefits. Now that you’ve qualified or can qualify, you don’t want your benefits reduced or eliminated when you receive payments from the NFL Concussion Settlement. You want to continue your needs-based programs and have your settlement money, too. How to do that without any offset requires putting some planning techniques into place.
Without planning, once you receive Settlement money, you will have to report those funds to our needs-based programs. At that time, you will likely no longer “need” and will no longer qualify for government assistance.
For example, Medi-Caid (Medi-Cal) currently only allows a single person to have only exempt assets plus $2,000 and a couple to have exempt assets plus $119,220. Exempt assets include the home, personal belongings, one car, IRA and other qualified retirement accounts. SSI claimants who exceed the $2,000 asset limit ($3,000 if married) are ineligible for benefits. In fact, claimants who are over the asset limit will not even have their disability claim fully evaluated –they will get a “technical denial” of benefits. At best, your Settlement money will cause your benefits to be reduced. At worst, your benefits could be cut off entirely –until you use up your Settlement money and can then begin the laborious process of re-qualifying for needs-based programs.
Numerous planning techniques can help you avoid the loss of your needs-based benefits when you receive the NFL Concussion Settlement.