Has anyone else noticed the irony of our current haste to attach more of the assets in personal estates to offset Medicaid spending for patients in nursing homes and our simultaneous haste to protect personal estates from Federal inheritance taxes?
Turns out that Robert Kuttner did four years ago. He credits political scientist Michael Lipsky with coining the phrase "pre-death tax."
This is the provision of the Medicaid law requiring middle class people to "spend down" their net worth to almost nothing before they can qualify for nursing home care, as paupers.
These increasingly incongruous policies are leading me toward the conclusion that we are going in exactly the wrong direction with respect to tightening Medicaid personal asset policies (check here and here). Kuttner and Lipsky reinforce that trend.
But all of the above are financial issues. There are healthcare reasons as well. They will be the subject of another post as soon as I can find the time to do the graphic depictions of what I've already written. (Don't hold your breath.)