Medicaid Update – Revised January 2013

In January, 2012, new regulations became effective in Illinois substantially changing eligibility for Medicaid coverage of long-term care. Although effective in January, the local offices of the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services, the agency making determinations of eligibility for Medicaid, did not implement these new regulations until July, 2012. Additionally, in June of 2012, Governor Quinn signed into law Medicaid reform, the SMART Act, which also made several significant changes to eligibility for Medicaid long term care coverage.  Both the new regulations and the SMART Act were implemented on July 1, 2012.

 Click here to download a fact sheet on the changes that have occurred to Medicaid in Illinois.

Medicaid Protection for Same-Sex Couples

When one partner in a long-term relationship needs expensive long-term care, often the only way for the couple to pay for it is to look to Medicaid.  Historically, there have been no spousal impoverishment protections afforded to partners in same-sex relationships when one partner needs long term care and applies for Medicaid.  However, the combination of the Illinois Civil Union Act and a policy change by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services ensure that Medicaid spousal impoverishment protections are afforded to Illinois same-sex civil union partners.

Click here to read an article on this topic.