OHCA Policies and Rules
317:35-19-4. Medicaid recovery
(a) General overview. The Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1993 mandates the state to seek recovery against the estate of certain Title XIX members who received medical care on or after July 1, 1994, and who were 55 years of age or older when the care was received. The payment of Title XIX by the Oklahoma Health Care Authority (OHCA) on behalf of a member who is an inpatient of a nursing facility, intermediate care facility for the mentally retarded or other medical institution creates a debt to the OHCA subject to recovery by legal action either in the form of a lien filed against the real property of the member and/or a claim made against the estate of the member. Only Title XIX received on or after July 1, 1994, will be subject to provisions of this part. Recovery for payments made under Title XIX for nursing care is limited by several factors, including the family composition at the time the lien is imposed and/or at the time of the member's death and by the creation of undue hardship at the time the lien is imposed or the claim is made against the estate. [See OAC 317:35-5-41.8(a)(3)(H) for consideration of home property as a countable resource.] State Supplemental Payments are not considered when determining the countable income. The types of medical care for which recovery can be sought include:
(1) nursing facility services,
(2) home and community based services,
(3) related hospital services,
(4) prescription drug services,
(5) physician services, and
(6) transportation services.
(b) Recovery through lien. The Oklahoma Health Care Authority (OHCA) may file and enforce a lien, after notice and opportunity for a hearing, against the real property of a member who is an inpatient in a nursing facility, ICF/MR or other medical institution in certain instances.
(1) Exceptions to filing a lien.
(A) A lien may not be filed on the home property if the member's family includes:
(i) a surviving spouse residing in the home;
(ii) a child or children age 20 or less lawfully residing in the home;
(iii) a disabled child or children of any age lawfully residing in the home; or
(iv) a brother or sister of the member who has an equity interest in the home and has been residing in the home for at least one year immediately prior to the member's admission to the nursing facility and who has continued to live there on a continuous basis since that time.
(B) If an individual covered under an Oklahoma Long-Term Care Partnership Program approved policy received benefits for which assets or resources were disregarded as provided for in OAC 317:35-5-41.9, the Oklahoma Health Care Authority will not seek recovery from the individual for the amount of assets or resources disregarded.
(2) Reasonable expectation to return home. A lien may be filed only after it has been determined, after notice and opportunity for a hearing, that the member cannot reasonably be expected to be discharged and return to the home. To return home means the member leaves the nursing facility and resides in the home on which the lien has been placed for a period of at least 90 days without being re-admitted as an inpatient to a facility providing nursing care. Hospitalizations of short duration that do not include convalescent care are not counted in the 90 day period. Upon certification for Title XIX for nursing care, OKDHS provides written notice to the member that a one-year period of inpatient care constitutes a determination by the OKDHS that there is no reasonable expectation that the member will be discharged and return home for a period of at least three months. The member or the member's representative is asked to declare intent to return home by signing the OKDHS Form 08MA024E, Acknowledgment of Intent to Return Home/Medicaid Recovery Program. Intent is defined here as a clear statement of plans in addition to other evidence and/or corroborative statements of others. Should the intent be to return home, the member must be informed that a one-year period of care at a nursing facility or facilities constitutes a determination that the member cannot reasonably be expected to be discharged and return home. When this determination has been made, the member receives a notice and opportunity for hearing. This notification occurs prior to filing of a lien. At the end of the 12-month period, a lien may be filed against the member's real property unless medical evidence is provided to support the feasibility of his/her returning to the home within a reasonable period of time (90 days). This 90-day period is allowed only if sufficient medical evidence is presented with an actual date for the return to the home.
(3) Undue hardship waiver. When enforcing a lien or a recovery from an estate [see (C) of this Section] would create an undue hardship, a waiver may be granted. Undue hardship exists when enforcing the lien would deprive the individual of medical care such that the individual's health or life would be endangered. Undue hardship exists when application of the rule would deprive the individual or family members who are financially dependent on him/her for food, clothing, shelter, or other necessities of life. Undue hardship does not exist, however, where the individual or his/her family is merely inconvenienced or where their lifestyle is restricted because of the lien or estate recovery being enforced. Decisions on undue hardship waivers are made at OKDHS State Office, Family Support Services Division, Health Related and Medical Services Section. Upon applying for an undue hardship waiver, an individual will receive written notice, in a timely process, whether an undue hardship waiver will be granted. If an undue hardship waiver is not granted, the individual will receive written notice of the process under which an adverse determination can be appealed. The OHCA Legal Division staff will receive notification on all undue hardship waiver decisions.
(4) Filing the lien. After it has been determined that the member cannot reasonably be expected to be discharged from the nursing facility and return home and the member has been given notice of the intent to file a lien against the real property and an opportunity for a hearing on the matter, a lien is filed by the Oklahoma Health Care Authority, Third Party Liability Unit, for record against the legal description of the real property in the office of the county clerk of the county in which the property is located. A copy of the lien is sent by OHCA to the member or his/her representative. The lien must contain the following information:
(A) the name and mailing address of the member, member's spouse, legal guardian, authorized representative, or individual acting on behalf of the member,
(B) the amount of Title XIX paid at the time of the filing of the lien and a statement that the lien amount will continue to increase by any amounts paid thereafter for XIX on the member's behalf,
(C) the date the member began receiving compensated inpatient care at a nursing facility or nursing facilities, intermediate care facility for the mentally retarded or other medical institution,
(D) the legal description of the real property against which the lien will be recorded, and
(E) the address of the Oklahoma Health Care Authority.
(5) Enforcing the lien. The lien filed by the OHCA for Title XIX correctly received may be enforced before or after the death of the member. But it may be enforced only:
(A) after the death of the surviving spouse of the member or until such time as the surviving spouse abandons the homestead to reside elsewhere;
(B) when there is no child of the member, natural or adopted, who is 20 years of age or less residing in the home;
(C) when there is no adult child of the member, natural or adopted, who is blind or disabled as defined in, OAC 317:35-1-2 residing in the home;
(D) when no brother or sister of the member is lawfully residing in the home, who has resided there for at least one year immediately before the date of the member's admission to the nursing facility, and has resided there on a continuous basis since that time; and
(E) when no son or daughter of the member is lawfully residing in the home who has resided there for at least two years immediately before the date of the member's admission to the nursing facility, and establishes to the satisfaction of the OKDHS that he or she provided care to the member which permitted the member to reside at home rather than in an institution and has resided there on continuous basis since that time.
(6) Dissolving the lien. The lien remains on the property even after transfer of title by conveyance, sale, succession, inheritance or will unless one of the following events occur:
(A) The lien is satisfied. The member or member's representative may discharge the lien at any time by paying the amount of lien to the OHCA. Should the payment of the debt secured by the lien be made to the county office, the payment is forwarded to OHCA/Third Party Liability, so that the lien can be released within 50 days. After that time, the member or the member's representative may request in writing that it be done. This request must describe the lien and the property with reasonable certainty. By statute, a fine may be levied against the lien holder if it is not released in a timely manner.
(B) The member leaves the nursing facility and resides in a property to which the lien is attached, for a period of more than 90 days without being re-admitted to a facility providing nursing care, even though there may have been no reasonable expectation that this would occur. If the member is re-admitted to a nursing facility during this period, and does return to his/her home after being released, another 90 days must be completed before the lien can be dissolved.
(7) Capital resources. Rules on the determination of capital resources for individuals related to the aged, blind, or disabled (See OAC 317:35-5-41 through 317:35-5-41.7) apply to the proceeds received for the property in excess of the amount of the lien after the lien is satisfied.
(c) Recovery from estates.
(1) If the member was age 55 or older when the nursing care was received, adjustment or recovery may be made only after the death of the individual's spouse, if any, and at a time when there are no surviving children age 20 or less and no surviving disabled children of any age living in the home. Oklahoma Statutes contain stringent time frames concerning when and how claims against an estate in probate are filed and paid. Therefore, timely updating of computer input forms indicating the death of the member is crucial to insure the OHCA's ability to file timely against the estate.
(2) The estate consists of all real and personal property and other assets included in member's estate as defined by Title 58 of the Oklahoma Statutes. Although county staff ordinarily will not be responsible for inventorying or assessing the estate, assets and property that are not considered in determining eligibility should be documented in the case record.
(3) After updating of computer input form indicating member's death, a computer generated report is sent to OHCA/Third Party Liability (TPL). This report will serve as notification to OHCA/TPL to initiate estate recovery.
(4) Undue hardship waivers may be granted for estate recovery as provided in (b)(3) of the Section.
(5) If an individual covered under an Oklahoma Long-Term Care Partnership Program approved policy received benefits for which assets or resources were disregarded as provided for in OAC 317:35-5-41.9, the Oklahoma Health Care Authority will not seek recovery from the individual's estate for the amount of assets or resources disregarded.
Disclaimer. The OHCA rules found on this Web site are unofficial. The official rules are published by the Oklahoma Secretary of State Office of Administrative Rules as Title 317 of the Oklahoma Administrative Code. To order an official copy of these rules, contact the Office of Administrative Rules at (405) 521-4911.