The short answer is that there are a lot of protections both for spouses of nursing home residents and for disabled children of applicants for Medicaid. But it may take some moving of money and ownership around when and if your father needs a nursing home care. I understand your mother's reluctance to spend hard-earned and hard-saved dollars on legal fees. But if the elder law attorney can save your mother even one month of paying out of pocket for your father's care or one sleepless night (or both), that will be money well spent. I strongly urge you and your mother to consult with an Indiana elder law attorney. Good luck.