Did you know that Medicaid coverage can continue even when work earnings are high enough to stop your SSI payment? Under a work incentive called 1619(b), Medicaid automatically continues when work earnings cause your SSI payment to stop.
What do I need to do?
To be eligible, you must:
- Stop receiving SSI payments because of your earned income.
- Have had SSI for at least one month.
- Have assets below $2,000 for an individual and $3,000 for a couple.
- Continue to have a disability.
- Need Medicaid in order to work.
- Have annual gross earned income below the annual threshold. Some people may be eligible for a higher individual threshold. Make sure to find out what the threshold is in your state.
Keep reporting to Social Security
You should continue to report your wages to Social Security even though you do not have an SSI payment. You must also continue to provide Social Security with requested information during annual redeterminations and Medical Continuing Disability Reviews.
Being eligible for 1619(b) also ensures that you remain SSI-eligible. This means that if your work ends or earned income decreases, you do not have to reapply to restart SSI payments. All you need to do is contact Social Security and inform them of the change in work.
There is no time limit for you to remain eligible for 1619(b) as long as you continue to meet the eligibility requirements.
How Does It Work? Meet Lily
Lily just graduated from high school. She has been working at a grocery store part-time. Now that she is no longer in school, she will increase her work hours to full-time. She also just got a raise at work and is earning $10.50 per hour. Lily’s benefits specialist informed her that her SSI payment will stop, and Lily is excited about the increased income, but is worried that her Medicaid coverage will stop, too. Lily still meets all of the other SSI eligibility requirements, so she is informed that her Medicaid will automatically continue under 1619(b). If Lily decides to drop her hours at work to enroll in school, Social Security can restart her SSI payments!
What If I No Longer Meet the Requirements for 1619(b)?
1619(b) Continued Medicaid only applies as long as you are otherwise eligible for SSI. If your SSI stops for a reason other than your work earnings, you might be eligible to enroll in different Medicaid programs in your state. A Work Incentives Benefits Specialist can tell you more about those other programs.
If you are married, there are special rules. You should contact your benefits specialist and Social Security to find out more about 1619(b) rules for couples.