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NJ - Disabled but working could get you Medicaid!!!

PostPosted: Wed Apr 11, 2007 7:52 pm
by Too Many Pills!!
Hi,

I'm a disabled New Jersey resident and have been researching a program here called "NJ WorkAbility". Under this program, if you're disabled (usually receiving SSDI) but are also working, you may be able to get Medicaid while keeping your SSDI and Medicare benefits.

Medicaid is different from state to state so this won't apply to everyone but you should check out whatever your state has to offer.

In NJ, Medicaid provides a basic set of covered services. They also have optional services that may be covered in some situations. (You can see what's what at http://www.state.nj.us/humanservices/dm ... vices.html ) Drug coverage is an Optional Service and I haven't yet been able to get past the basic qualification process to find out what special requirements have to be met for drugs. (But I haven't given up trying!!!)

The qualification process is a little more complicated for a married person, so I'll give you the eligibility guidelines for an unmarried New Jersey resident first.

1) You must be between 16 and 64 years of age.
2) You must work part time, full time or be self-employed and have proof of employment.
3) You must have a permanent disability (usually determined by the Social Security Administration.)
4) Your earned income can be anywhere up to $49,020 per year (and it doesn't matter how little you earn.)
5) Your unearned income (pension, child support, interest, etc) can be up to $817.00 per month.
6) You must have less than $20,000 in liquid assets. (Your home, car and/or retirement accounts are not counted as assets.)

Your own Social Security Disability Benefits or Railroad Retirement Benefits are NOT INCLUDED in determining if you're eligible!

If you're married like me, all of the above guidelines apply except both your own and your spouse's income and assets are counted, and the limits are a little higher.

1) A married couple's joint earned income can be up to $66,012 per year.
2) A married couple's joint unearned income can be up to $1100.00 per month.
3) A married couple's joint liquid assets can't be more than $30,000.

A BIG "gotcha" if both you and your spouse are disabled but only one of you is working: The Social Security Disability Benefits for the spouse who is not working DO count (as unearned income) in determining if you're eligible! (This is what happened in my situation.)

BUT if you're both disabled AND you both work, all of your SSDI benefits DON'T count and you could BOTH be eligible!!!

If you think you meet the eligibility guidelines, you should call the NJ Division of Disability Services (1-888-285-3036) between 9:00 am and 5:00 pm, Monday through Friday. The woman I spoke with several times was very helpful. You can also go to http://www.state.nj.us/humanservices/dd ... ility.html to verify this information.

I've only been working part-time for a few months (I hope I can keep it up!) and if my hubby is able to work a few hours per month as well, we could both get this coverage. What a relief it would be if we could actually get some or all of our medications paid for through Medicaid!

I'll I'll try to post what I run into as I go through the process and I'd appreciate hearing what other people are finding out too. :)


PostPosted: Fri Apr 13, 2007 12:55 am
by dlcnurse
A good site to find information on benefits for disabilities, medicaid, medicare, food stamps, etc... can also be found at http://www.benefits.gov/ they have alot of information on their site.

Workability DOES provide FREE medications in NJ

PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2007 9:53 pm
by jimithy
NJ WorkAbility effectively provides full Medicaid coverage to persons with disabilities who would otherwise not meet the income and resource eligibility requirements for other New Jersey Medicaid programs. Medicaid provides coverage for an extensive array of health care services, including those not typically covered by Medicare or most private sector health plans. In addition to physician and practitioner services and inpatient and outpatient care, Medicaid pays for a wide range of health care items and services that are potentially vital for persons with disabilities, including prescription medications, home health care and long-term care services, mental health services, physical, occupational and speech therapy, medical supplies, and durable medical equipment.
http://www.state.nj.us/humanservices/dds/publications/NJ%20WorkAbility%20Evaluation-%20Final%20Report.pdf