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Estate Recovery 

Estate Recovery is a federally mandated program to help pay for medical costs for the increasing number of people in need of care. The Colorado Department of Health Care Policy and Financing recovers medical care costs from the estates of certain former recipients.

Program Requirements

Medicaid clients who are 55 years of age or older, or an inpatient of any age residing in a institutionalized care facility, can be affected by this program and may be required to repay, from their estate, all Medicaid benefits paid on their behalf.

Certain estates are exempt from recovery. The State may recover costs of medical assistance from an estate only when:

  • Medical services were delivered to a person of any age who lives in a nursing facility or to a person over the age of 55 in any living situation.


  • The deceased recipient is not survived by a spouse, a child under the age of 21, or a blind or disabled dependent.

Unless both conditions are met, the State will not recover any medical assistance costs from an estate.

Further, the State will not recover medical assistance costs from the sale of a deceased recipient's home if:

  • There is a brother or sister who lived in the home for at least one year before the recipient went to a nursing facility, and who has lived there continuously since the date of nursing facility entry.


  • There is a son or daughter who lived in the home for at least two years before the recipient entered a nursing facility, whose care allowed the recipient to delay nursing facility placement and who has lived in the home continuously since the date of nursing facility entry.

For more information contact the Weld County Department of Human Services, or your local Department of Human Services if you live in another county.