As a general rule, a person’s home is exempt and is not counted as an asset if the equity value of the home is under $552,000 and if you are married. However, in North Dakota there is another rule that is rarely talked about, that can force you to sell your home if you are in a nursing facility for 6 months or longer. The rule is hard to find, but I found it in the North Dakota Administrative Code and it states that “property is not occupied by an individual in long-term care or the state hospital, with no spouse, disabled adult child, or child under age twenty-one at home, unless a physician has certified that the individual is likely to return home within six months.” NDAC 75-02-02.1-01(22 – Occupied)
In other words, if you are single, own your home, and are in a nursing facility for 6 months, Medicaid will no longer cover your stay at the nursing facility. That means you will either have to pay out of your own pocket, sell your house, or move back to your home once that 6 month stay occurs.
The median annual rate for nursing homes in North Dakota is $87,553. The median annual rate for Home Health Aide Services is $53,310. You can add Adult Day Care Daily rates of $16,357 (median annual rate) and you would still be able to stay in your home for less than a nursing home.
Freedom Resource Center can help you explore moving back to your home with home and community based services in place.
One other bit of North Dakota information…the ND Administrative Code also defines an “Institutionalized individual” as an individual who lives in a nursing facility. (NDAC 75-02-02.1-01(16 –Institutionalized individual)