Can I apply for my 16-17 year old youth for Medicaid?

medicaid_questionQ) I am a case manager for runaway and homeless youth. Can I apply my 16-17yo unaccompanied youth for Medicaid? Will anything be required from the guardian? Is there anything I need to know about this process?

A) Yes, you can apply for Medicaid for your 16-17-year-old unaccompanied youth. As a case manager, you are considered a “responsible adult” and can apply for Medicaid on behalf of the youth. You will need to provide the following information when you apply:

  • The youth’s name, date of birth, and Social Security number
  • The youth’s address
  • The youth’s income
  • The youth’s health insurance status
  • Proof of the youth’s unaccompanied status

You will not need to provide any information from the youth’s guardian.

Here are some things you need to know about the process of applying for Medicaid for an unaccompanied youth:

  • The application process can vary from state to state.
  • You may need to provide additional documentation, such as a letter from the youth’s school or a police report.
  • The application process can take several weeks.

If you have any questions about the process of applying for Medicaid for an unaccompanied youth, you should contact your state’s Medicaid office.

According to the Government Medicaid Website; Most states have elected to provide Medicaid to children with family incomes above the minimum of 100% of the FPL, and all states have expanded coverage to children with higher incomes through the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). See the Medicaid and CHIP upper income eligibility levels for children by state.

In general, children in families with incomes up to $44,700/year (for a family of four in 2011) are likely to be eligible for Medicaid or CHIP coverage. In many states, families with higher incomes can still qualify for coverage for their children. This includes children in mandatory Medicaid eligibility groups, which states must cover in order to participate in Medicaid, as well as children in optional eligibility groups that a state may elect to cover. All children from birth to age 6 with family incomes up to 133% ($29,700 for a family of four in 2011) and children age 6-18 with family incomes up to 100% ($22,350 for a family of four in 2011) are eligible for Medicaid. Other eligible children include infants born to women covered by Medicaid (known as “deemed newborns”), certain children in foster care or an adoption assistance program and certain children with disabilities. read more

The rules for Medicaid eligibility are different for each state. You need to call or visit your state Medicaid Office and speak with a Medicaid counselor regarding Medicaid coverage for your 16-17 youth. (In some states you can apply online, visit your state website)

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