by John Darer® CLU ChFC MSSC CeFT® RSP CLTC
If you die with a balance in your Medicare Set Aside (MSA), here's what may happen:
- If death occurs before the Workers Compensation Medicare Set Aside (WCMSA), Liability Medicare Set Aside (LMSA) or No Fault Medicare Set Aside
(NFMSA) is fully exhausted, the Estate Administator, Executor, or if the MSA is professional managed, the MSA Adminstartor should notify the BCRC (see BCRC below)
- Medical Service provided before the death, and related to the injury that led to the creation of the MSA are outstanding claims that must be paid for by the Estate of the person who has died with the open MSA.
- If there is any money left in the MSA account after all related and outstanding bills are paid, the funds are distributed according to the last will and testament of the person who has died. If the person has died without a will, any balance is distributed according to your state's intestacy laws.
- If the MSA is a Structured MSA and the annuity that funds the MSA has a certain period, or a cash or installment refund, payment will be paid to the named beneficiary or beneficiaries. Note that some annuity funded MSAs are temporary life or straight life annuities that have no survivor benefits.
What is the BCRC?
The Benefits Coordination & Recovery Center (BCRC) is responsible for ensuring that Medicare gets repaid by the beneficiary for any conditional payments it makes related to a liability, no-fault, or workers’ compensation case. A conditional payment is a payment Medicare makes for services another payer may be responsible for. The payment is "conditional" because it must be repaid to Medicare when a beneficiary receives a settlement, judgment, award, or other payment. When the BCRC learns of a case, they will gather information about any related conditional payments Medicare made and request repayment.