Medicare, Medicaid Options for Disabled Workers

Monday’s post discussed how most people who receive Supplemental Security Income (“SSI”) benefits are automatically eligible to receive Medicaid coverage. On Wednesday, we discussed how Social Security Disability Insurance (“SSDI”) beneficiaries can begin receiving Medicare coverage after waiting for 24 months. There are other cases that fall outside these lines, and today we discuss a few of those situations.

Can I Receive SSI Benefits and Medicare?

While SSI benefits usually lead to automatic Medicaid eligibility, Medicare is also a possibility. Medicare coverage is automatic if you are over the age of 65. If you are not, you can still qualify for Medicare if you fall under one of the other eligibility categories, which include the following:

  • You receive SSDI benefits and waited 24 months after their start
  • If you receive SSDI benefits, there is little or no wait period if you suffer from Lou Gehrig’s disease or kidney failure, or you received a kidney transplant
  • You meet certain employment conditions like receiving a pension from a railroad retirement board or you worked or are an immediate family member of someone who worked in a government job where the worker paid Medicare taxes and now meets Social Security’s “disability” definition

Is Medicaid available for disabled workers?

Yes, many states provide a Medicaid “buy-in” for disabled Americans who are working and earning too much to qualify for SSI or SSDI benefits. You do not have to be receiving disability benefits, but the state will still need to make a determination as to whether you meet its definition of “disabled.” If you are eligible for your state’s buy-in program, you can pay premiums to obtain Medicaid coverage. If you think you could benefit from buying into Medicaid even if you earn too much to qualify normally, more information is available from a Tulsa SSI law firm.

Are you a disabled worker who has had problems obtaining health coverage for you and your family? What recommendations do you have for others going through similar problems?

Troutman & Troutman, P.C. – Tulsa Social Security disability attorneys

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