How to Apply for Medicaid

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To apply for Medicaid you need to contact your local social services department and show proof of your financial need for this assistance.

  • Understand that Medicaid is a state-run program that provides medical insurance for low-income people. Each state has different eligibility requirements and different application procedures.

  • Know that if you receive SSI (Supplemental Security Income) from the Social Security Administration, you will probably qualify for Medicaid.

  • Recognize that there have been recent limits placed on this program at the federal level, so the benefits are not as wide as they used to be.

  • Contact your local state Department of Social Services or Human Services. Your state may have a different name for this agency. It is the agency that provides food stamps and financial assistance. Call your county building and ask for the name of it if you don't know it.

  • Ask for a Medicaid application. You will need to complete it in the office.

  • Take your birth certificate, driver's license, pay stubs, Social Security card, proof of address, proof of other insurance if you have it and information about any bank accounts you have.

  • Be prepared to answer questions about your finances. Eligibility is based on your income level.

  • Ask office personnel for assistance if you do not know how to complete the form.

  • Request assistance at home if you would like to apply but are unable to leave home.

Tips & Warnings

  • Be honest in the facts you present. Medicaid fraud is a hot issue.
  • Contact an elder law attorney if you are doing Medicaid planning in the event you need to go to a nursing home. This is a very complicated area of law and you need quality legal assistance to ensure that you take full advantage of the law without doing anything illegal.
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