Id. Dept. of Health & Welfare v. McCormickAnnotate this Case
This appeal arose from a claim filed by the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare in the probate proceeding of George D. Perry, the deceased spouse of Medicaid recipient Martha J. Perry. The Department sought to recover funds under I.C. 56-218 from the sale of the couple’s home (their only significant asset) to recoup Medicaid benefits paid to Martha during her lifetime. The magistrate court disallowed the Department’s claim for recovery, finding that Martha had no interest in the real property because George, acting for Martha under a power of attorney, conveyed the property to himself before his death. That decision was upheld on appeal to the district court. The Department appealed to the Supreme Court. Upon review, the Court found that the district court erred in finding that federal law preempted the Department's ability to recover from George's estate what was once Martha's community property during the marriage. The Court reversed the district court and remanded the case for further proceedings.