What is the process for transferring Medicaid benefits from one state to another?

4 answers | Last updated: Oct 27, 2016
A fellow caregiver asked...

How does an elderly parent transfer medical benefits (Medicaid) from Illinois to Georgia?

Expert Answers

Unfortunately, there is no simple way to "transfer" Medicaid benefits from one state to another. That's because even though the federal government establishes basic guidelines for Medicaid, each state runs its own Medicaid program with slightly different rules for eligibility and coverage. So, your parent will have to file a new application with the Georgia Medicaid program for coverage there. You can help your parent begin this process by filling out an application for Georgia Medicaid online as soon as your parent physically moves into the state. Eligibility will be determined within 45 days of filing the application, but if your parent is granted Medicaid eligibility, coverage will be backdated to the date the application is filed.

One thing you can do to make the process go more quickly and smoothly is to gather as soon as possible the information and documents the Georgia Medicaid program requires with an application. You can also check ahead of time on Georgia's eligibility limits regarding income and resources, which vary depending on the type of Medicaid coverage your parent is applying for.

Community Answers

Paul b. answered...

Good advice. I also recommend checking the state you want to get Medicaid in, for individual states not listed in this response. Remember to always start early.

Topaze answered...

I think the best thing to do is to contact the medicaid hot line or if you know the medicaid office in your area or their phone # go from there.

Since I am in Florida the hot line # is 1(800-273-5880)

and my local # is (904)353-2100 in Jacksonville,FL Duval county.

A fellow caregiver answered...

Also, in the state of Illinois, we are required to get a cancellation letter from the previous state's public aid office before they will open a case in IL, but they back date it so there is no lapse in coverage. Not sure if all states operate that way, or only Illinois does this.