Medicaid is a critical lifeline for many low-income, elderly, or disabled New Jersey residents who, without Medicaid, would have no access to health insurance or to a critical source of funds to pay for long-term care costs or nursing home admission. However, the Medicaid eligibility process is incredibly confusing and tedious. Under the current Medicaid eligibility system, applicants face a patchwork of county, state, and federal agencies which often use different processes for enrollment. Beneficiaries have trouble navigating the system, often resulting in benefit denials.

We at the Law Office of Donald D. Vanarelli know how difficult the Medicaid eligibility process can be in New Jersey through personal experience because we represent many elderly and disabled NJ residents who seek Medicaid coverage.

Aiming to make the application process for Medicaid and NJ FamilyCare simpler and more accessible, legislation to improve the eligibility determination system for these programs was signed into law on August 23rd by Governor Phil Murphy.

This new law (A-4569) requires the Commissioner of Human Services to develop an information technology platform for use by the State, county welfare agencies, and State contractors for the purpose of intake, processing, and tracking of applications for benefits under Medicaid and NJ FamilyCare programs.

In a signing statement, Governor Murphy noted the importance of the goals of the new law:

I applaud the sponsors of this bill for recognizing the importance of creating a consumer-friendly platform that will encourage increased enrollment, foster continuity of care for the Medicaid population and allow for more efficient data tracking. … I am confident that … this bill[] will help maximize Medicaid enrollment and guarantee that every resident has access to the care they deserve.

Hopefully, the new law will make the Medicaid application process simpler, uniform throughout the State and manageable.

The NJ State Bar Association Press Release about the new law is attached here –

Download (PDF, 122KB)

Assembly Bill No. 4569 is attached here –

Download (PDF, 137KB)

Governor’s Statement Upon Signing Bill –

Download (PDF, 67KB)

Assembly Human Services Committee Statement to No. 4569 is attached here –

Download (PDF, 114KB)

Assembly Appropiations Committee Statement to No. 4569 is attached here –

Download (PDF, 115KB)

For additional information concerning Medicaid applications and appeals, visit:

NJ Medicaid Applications

 

For additional information concerning Medicaid and public benefits planning, visit:

NJ Medicaid and Public Benefits Planning