A Miller Trust solves only one problem when applying for Medicaid: ensuring Medicaid income eligiblilty when a person applying for Medicaid has too much income. This type of trust is not useful for any other reason. A Miller Trust cannot protect assets and does not allow you to shelter excess money. If a person applying for Medicaid has more than the federally established income limit ($2,199 monthly for 2013) – they would need a Miller Trust to qualify for Medicaid.
How is income directed into the trust bank account?
Once the Miller Trust is created, all of the income of the person needing care must be directed into the trust bank account. Until the income providers can deposit the funds automatically in the trust bank account, you should write checks for the exact amount of income from the receiving bank account to the Miller trust account.
From Medicaid’s perspective, if the trust receives the income, the patient is not receiving it. That’s how the problem of excess income is resolved.
Who can create a Miller trust?
Texas Department of Health and Human Services (the state agency that manages Medicaid) is very lenient regarding who can establish the trust. The problem occurs when bank personnel do not know how to correctly open the trust bank account.
Some banks will demand a financial power of attorney. If so, you have present the power of attorney for the bank’s legal department to approve. Without one, you need to find a bank that will waive that requirement or have one drafted. If the person needing care lacks the competency required to create a new power of attorney, your only recourse is seek a guardianship and petition the probate court to have a Miller Trust created.