Deferred Action Recipients Ineligible for Medicaid

Deferred Action policy, providing a temporary relief to young undocumented immigrants, was implemented by President Obama. According to this policy, undocumented youth who receive deferred action and employment authorization, will also be granted driver’s licenses. However, this is only applicable to undocumented immigrants who are between 16 and 31 years of age. Apart from that they will have to satisfy various eligibility requirements. But if they are granted deferred action, they can remain in the United States for two years and moving forward, they can also renew work permits and deferred action.

After this process was implemented by the President, Governor of Arizona, signed an anti-immigrant order, which states that Arizona will not grant state benefits to deferred action recipients. Gov. Brewer who signed that order said that the undocumented immigrants who may not be granted lawful status are also ineligible for driver’s licenses and other benefits. Following that, Governors of Texas and Nebraska also signed similar orders.

DHS has implemented the deferred action process to ensure that the US immigration laws related to removal are enforced on undocumented immigrants who are considered to be high priority cases and those who are likely to endanger public safety and national security. And the individuals who are considered to be of low priority may be granted a relief from deportation, temporarily.

Though this process is considered to be a boon to the DREAMers, who always wanted to be recognized by the country, this process does not grant them benefits such as medicaid. The reasons for which the DHS has brought forward this process are not related to the eligibility for Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program. And so the US Department of Health and Human Services, has announced that the deferred action recipients may not be eligible to receive Medicaid and CHIP benefits. Deferred action beneficiaries will hence be excluded from health coverage and they will only obtain the same health care benefits as that of the undocumented immigrants.