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Issue Alert - 07-04-09

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Apr 16, 2007

Program Area:

Medicaid (MA)

Issue Summary:

Effective April 2007, the Department of Human Services (DHS) no longer will deny or terminate impose Medicaid penalties based on a FIP applicant’s non-compliance with work or self-sufficiency requirements, and the minimum length of a Medicaid penalty for noncompliant FIP recipients remains one month

Persons Affected:

FIP applicants and recipients who do not comply with employment or self-sufficiency related requirements

For More Information:

Center for Civil Justice 320 S. Washington, 2nd Floor Saginaw, MI 48607 (989) 755-3120, (800)724-7441 Fax: (989) 755-3558 E-mail:

Michigan Poverty Law Program 611 Church Street, Suite 4A Ann Arbor, MI 48104-3000 (734) 998-6100 (734) 998-9125 Fax


Federal law allows but does not require states to impose employment-related penalties on Medicaid for non-pregnant adults who are experiencing cash assistance penalties for noncompliance with employment-related requirements.


Medicaid for children and pregnant women cannot be denied or terminated as a penalty for noncompliance with FIP work-related requirements.

What's Happening?

Effective April 1, 2007, DHS policy provides that DHS will not impose Medicaid penalties because an applicant (as opposed to a recipient) fails to comply with employment or self-sufficiency related requirements.

DHS will continue to terminate Medicaid to non-pregnant adults in families that have lost FIP as an employment-related or self-sufficiency related penalty.  However, although FIP is terminated for minimum of 3 months, Medicaid will only be terminated for a minimum of one month and the individual can obtain reinstatement of Medicaid by registering for work through the Michigan Works Agency (MWA).   (PEM 239 p. 1-2).

What Should Advocates Do?

Make sure FIP applicants and recipients understand that they cannot be denied Medicaid as an employment-related sanction even if their FIP application is delayed or denied.


Make sure individuals whose Medicaid is terminated as a noncompliance sanction are aware of how to re-qualify for Medicaid by registering for work wit h the MWA.


The Center for Civil Justice is interested in hearing from, and assisting, advocates assisting clients with Medicaid sanctions based on FIP noncompliance.

What Should Clients Do?

Seek legal advice if you receive notice your Medicaid is being terminated.


Be sure to tell DHS if you become pregnant while receiving FIP or Medicaid.


If you disagree with the decision to terminate your Medicaid or believe it is incorrect, request a hearing within 12 days of the date on the notice to continue receiving Medicaid benefits pending the outcome of the hearing.


Register for work at the MWA and re-apply for Medicaid if your FIP and Medicaid is terminated and you want to requalify for Medicaid.

Finding Help

Most legal aid and legal services offices handle these types of cases, and they do not charge a fee. You can locate various sources of legal and related services, including the free legal aid office that serves your county, at You can also look in the yellow pages under "attorneys" or call the toll-free lawyer referral number, (800) 968-0738.