PUBLIC ASSISTANCE AND WELFARE
PUBLIC ASSISTANCE LAW
56-218. Recovery of certain medical assistance. (1) Except where exempted or waived in accordance with federal law medical assistance pursuant to this chapter paid on behalf of an individual who was fifty-five (55) years of age or older when the individual received such assistance may be recovered from the individual’s estate, and the estate of the spouse, if any, for such aid paid to either or both:
(a) There shall be no adjustment or recovery until after the death of both the individual and the spouse, if any, and only at a time when the individual has no surviving child who is under twenty-one (21) years of age or is blind or permanently and totally disabled as defined in 42 U.S.C. 1382c.
(b) While one (1) spouse survives, except where joint probate will be authorized pursuant to section 15-3-111, Idaho Code, a claim for recovery under this section may be established in the estate of the deceased spouse.
(c) The claim against the estate of the first deceased spouse must be made within the time provided by section 15-3-801(b), Idaho Code, if the estate is administered and actual notice is given to the director as required by subsection (5) of this section. However, if there is no administration of the estate of the first deceased spouse, or if no actual notice is given to the director as required by subsection (5) of this section, no claim shall be required until the time provided for creditor claims in the estate of the survivor.
(d) Nothing in this section authorizes the recovery of the amount of any aid from the estate or surviving spouse of a recipient to the extent that the need for aid resulted from a crime committed against the recipient.
(2) Transfers of real or personal property, on or after the look-back dates defined in 42 U.S.C. 1396p, by recipients of such aid, or their spouses, without adequate consideration are voidable and may be set aside by an action in the district court.
(3) Except where there is a surviving spouse, or a surviving child who is under twenty-one (21) years of age or is blind or permanently and totally disabled as defined in 42 U.S.C. 1382c, the amount of any medical assistance paid under this chapter on behalf of an individual who was fifty-five (55) years of age or older when the individual received such assistance is a claim against the estate in any guardianship or conservatorship proceedings and may be paid from the estate.
(4) For purposes of this section, the term "estate" shall include:
(a) All real and personal property and other assets included within the individual’s estate, as defined for purposes of state probate law; and
(b) Any other real and personal property and other assets in which the individual had any legal title or interest at the time of death, to the extent of such interest, including such assets conveyed to a survivor, heir, or assign of the deceased individual through joint tenancy, tenancy in common, survivorship, life estate, living trust or other arrangement.
(5) Claims made pursuant to this section shall be classified and paid as a debt with preference as defined in section 15-3-805(5), Idaho Code. Any distribution or transfer of the estate prior to satisfying such claim is voidable and may be set aside by an action in the district court. The personal representative of every estate subject to a claim under this section must, within thirty (30) days of the appointment, give notice in writing to the director of his or her appointment to administer the estate.
(6) The department may file a notice of lien against the property of any estate subject to a claim under this section.
(a) In order to perfect a lien against real or personal property, the department shall, within ninety (90) days after the personal representative or successor makes a written request for prompt action to the director, or three (3) years from the death of the decedent, whichever is sooner, file a notice of lien in the same general form and manner as provided in section 56-218A(3)(a), Idaho Code, in the office of the secretary of state, pursuant to section 45-1904, Idaho Code. Failure to file a notice of lien does not affect the validity of claims made pursuant to this section.
(b) The department may release the lien in whole or in part to permit the estate property to be administered by a court-appointed personal representative.
(c) The department may foreclose its lien, without probate, in any of the following circumstances:
(i) Where no personal representative has been appointed after one (1) year from the date of death of the survivor of both the individual and spouse, if any;
(ii) Where the property has been abandoned by the decedent’s heirs or successors, if any;
(iii) Where the real property taxes that are due and payable have remained unpaid for two (2) years and, after demand by the department, the heirs or successors, if any, have failed to seek appointment or pay the property taxes; or
(iv) Where all parties interested in the estate consent to foreclosure of the lien.
(7) The director shall promulgate rules reasonably necessary to implement this section including, but not limited to, rules establishing undue hardship waivers for the following circumstances:
(a) The estate subject to recovery is income-producing property that provides the primary source of support for other family members; or
(b) The estate has a value below an amount specified in the rules; or
(c) Recovery by the department will cause the heirs of the deceased individual to be eligible for public assistance.
(8) The cause of action to void a transfer without adequate consideration established in this section shall not be deemed to have accrued until the department discovers, or reasonably could have discovered, the facts constituting the transfer without adequate consideration.
[56-218, added 1988, ch. 49, sec. 1, p. 73; am. 1994, ch. 329, sec. 1, p. 1059; am. 1995, ch. 105, sec. 1, p. 336; am. 1997, ch. 205, sec. 2, p. 612; am. 1998, ch. 9, sec. 1, p. 106; am. 2004, ch. 216, sec. 1, p. 650; am. 2005, ch. 304, sec. 1, p. 951; am. 2006, ch. 179, sec. 2, p. 554; am. 2008, ch. 182, sec. 7, p. 552.]