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Pohlmann v. Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services

Nebraska Supreme Court
710 N.W.2d 639 (2006)


Facts

Herman Pohlmann’s will created a trust naming his wife, Ruth Pohlmann (Ruth) (plaintiff), as beneficiary. The trust provided trust income to Ruth for life, as well as any payments from the principal that the trustee deemed appropriate for Ruth’s health and support. After Herman’s death, Ruth applied to the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services (the department) (defendant) for Medicaid benefits. The department denied Ruth’s application, finding that her income and resources exceeded Medicaid’s threshold. In so finding, the department considered Ruth’s trust income, as well as the trust’s corpus. Outside of the trust’s corpus, Ruth’s other income and resources were below Medicaid’s threshold. Ruth sued the department, appealing the order. The trial court affirmed the department’s order. Ruth appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Stephan, J.)

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