Medi-Cal Coverage for California Former Foster Youth Under the Affordable Care Act
The Affordable Care Act is a federal law that increases access to health insurance for uninsured Americans. California recently implemented the Affordable Care Act under state law.
Former foster youth will be eligible for Medi-Cal until age 26 under the federal Affordable Care Act. To qualify, individuals must have been in foster care on their 18th birthday.
Beginning January 1, 2014 youth who were in foster care on their 18th birthday are eligible for Medi-Cal coverage up to the age of 26 regardless of income. California law also provides coverage to former foster youth in the following situations:
- In receipt of foster care in another state
- Youth under court dependency placed with a relative in receipt of Calworks
- Youth in a supervised juvenile probation placement
- Youth that may have been temporarily absent from their foster care placement on their 18th birthday due to hospitalization, leaving placement without approval etc.
How Do California Former Foster Youth Enroll?
- Medi-Cal coverage for youth in Foster Care in California on their 18th birthday will continue without any interruption in coverage and without requiring a new application.
- Youth who turn 21 between July and December 2013 will maintain coverage until age 26 and do not need to take any additional steps to enroll as long as they are currently covered by Medi-Cal.
- Youth who turn 21 after January 2014 will maintain coverage until age 26 and do not need to take any additional steps to enroll as long as they are currently covered by Medi-Cal.
Does the Affordable Care Act Help Youth Who Move Out of State?
- California will provide coverage to former foster youth from other states who were in care on their 18th birthday. Therefore, if a youth was in foster care on their 18th birthday in another state and they move to California, they can obtain Medi-Cal.
- However, it is not clear if other states will choose to extend coverage to former foster youth from other states, and the federal government has not yet finalized regulations that will determine whether other states are required to provide this coverage. Therefore, if a youth whose dependency was established in California moves to another state, he/she must check with that state to see if they can obtain coverage from that state until age 26.
For Questions or Help with Medi-Cal Enrollment
If you or someone you might know was a former foster youth and has questions about enrollment in Medi-Cal, please use the contact information below:
Medi-Cal until Age 26 for Foster Youth
Former foster youth and current AB12 participating foster youth will be eligible for Medi-Cal until age 26 under the federal Affordable Care Act. To qualify youth must have been in foster care on their 18th birthday.