What is a Miller Trust? Well a Miller Trust is also known as a Qualified Income Trust, also known as a d4a trust. A lot of times people have confusion as to whether or not a Miller Trust is a viable planning tool for them when it comes to estate planning. However, a Miller Trust is only specifically utilized for one thing and that is with respect to qualifying for Medicaid coverage for skilled nursing care, within the State of Florida. Well why would I potentially need a Miller Trust in the event that I needed Medicaid for skilled nursing care?
Well, the whole purpose of a Miller Trust is to divert excess income that the recipient is receiving on a monthly basis. Let me explain how this works. Right now the allowable threshold for income on a monthly basis from Medicaid for skilled nursing care is $2,205 per month. Let’s say you have a situation … I want to be very clear here, this is the gross monthly income. There’s a lot of misnomers where people … 2,205 net within my bank account each month from my social security. Unfortunately, Medicaid does not consider what your net income is. Medicaid only considers what your gross monthly income is. Let’s use the hypothetical example that you have an individual whose gross monthly income is $2,206 per month, so $1 over the allowable threshold for Medicaid. In that situation, if you just applied for Medicaid based upon what your income was, you would be denied, and a lot of people say, “Well, a dollar, that’s not very much at all,” but that’s the requirement.
In order to essentially divert that excess money, that dollar each month, a Miller trust is created and funded in the same month that you are trying to attain Medicaid coverage, in order to divert that excess income. A Miller trust is only a viable planning tool in the event that you do have more than $2,205 on a monthly basis as far as your gross monthly income, in order to qualify for Medicaid for skilled nursing care. If you have any other questions regarding a Miller trust or if a Miller trust is a viable planning tool for you, please give me a call here at the law firm of Waller & Mitchell at 727-847-2288.