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Medicaid qualifying time for resident alien (Florida)?

Miami, FL |

My aunt is 72 years old and she received her green card (resident alien) 3 years ago. She has no income or support. The Florida Dep of Children and Families, who is running Medicaid, decliend her application on the grounds that she needs to be a resident for 5 years before she is eligible for benefits. That sounds very odd to me. Particularly since she is in serious need for medical/hospital attention. Can anyone offer advice on how she can get covered right away?

Attorney Answers 1


  1. Here's an exceprt from a government report on Florida Medicaid requirements. "A Medicaid beneficiary must be a resident of the State from which the beneficiary receives Medicaid benefits and a citizen or national of the United States or a qualified alien.2 Title IV of the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996, Public Law 104-193, as codified, in part, at 8 U.S.C. §§ 1601–1646, provides that legal resident aliens and other qualified aliens who entered the United States on or after August 22, 1996, are ineligible for Medicaid for the first 5 years after entry." The report came from the link below.

    It seems that federal law allows states the option of extending Medicaid assistance to children and pregnant women who are aliens in the U.S. for less than 5 years. I could not find anything extending Medicaid Coverage to the elder in the U.S. less than 5 years.

    There is a program for Medicaid coverage for medical emergencies if the person has not been in the U.S. for 5 years. You might contact your local health department to determine if they will help establish that there is a medical emergency.

    My comments are not intended to establish an attorney-client relationship, are not confidential, and are not intended to constitute legal advice. Proper legal advice can only be given by an attorney who agrees to represent you, who reviews the facts of your specific case, who does not have a conflict of interest preventing the representation, and who is licensed as an attorney in the state where the law applies.

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