CANHR: Changing California’s Medi-Cal Recovery System: SB 1124 (Hernandez)

From our colleagues at CANHR: 

SB 1124 (Hernandez) was introduced on Thursday, March 27, 2014 – no bells and whistles rang out, but they should have.  SB 1124, co-sponsored by CANHR and Western Center on Law and Poverty, includes the most important Medi-Cal Recovery changes since 1993, when the current law was passed via Governor Wilson’s budget proposal. The new language is now in print (see 

Many poor Californians are afraid to enroll in the Medi-Cal Expansion for fear of losing their homes to the Medi-Cal Recovery Program.  SB 1124 would address this barrier to enrollment by eliminating most of the optional recovery provisions and allow thousands of older, low-income Medi-Cal beneficiaries to be relieved of the worry about losing their family homes. SB 1124:

•       Limits recovery for those 55+ to what is required by federal law – e.g. nursing facility, home and community based services and related hospital and prescription drug services – eliminates optional recovery; 

•       Eliminates recovery from the estate of a surviving spouse of a deceased Medi-Cal beneficiary;

•       Restricts recovery amount to benefits paid for services actually received or capitated monthly rate, whichever is less; 

•       Requires DHCS to provide claims detail information free of charge to Medi-Cal beneficiaries or their representatives via phone, internet, mail, in person or other means, and requires the Department to post information on their web site the methods by which a consumer or his/her representative can request claims detail information.

Attached please find a fact sheet on this bill and a sample support letter. The first hearing on SB 1124 is tentatively set for April 9 in the Senate Health Committee – send letters of support by Wednesday April 2nd, to Senator Ed Hernandez, Chair, Senate Health Committee via FAX: (916) 324-0384.  Please email or fax me a copy of your letter (contact info below).

We’ll keep you up to date on the status, or go to to follow the status of this important bill.

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