Federal law requires that many people who apply for MaineCare prove both their U.S. citizenship and their identity to the Maine Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). This law is for both adults and children.
For most people, this will be pretty easy. If you are a citizen and have a Social Security Number, then DHHS will check with Social Security to make sure that you are a citizen. You will not have to give any other proof.
Not everyone must prove their citizenship
The law does NOT apply to everyone. The people who do not have to show documents to prove their citizenship and their identity are:
People with Medicare
People with Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
People with Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI)
Legal immigrants, such as people with "green cards" and refugees
These people have already shown documents proving their citizenship or their immigration status. They have also proven their identity to state or federal government officials. These people do not have to do anything different to get or keep MaineCare.
Infants and Pregnant Women:
There are special rules for infants. If the mother is on MaineCare at the time of the birth, then the newborns will get MaineCare. They will have until they are 1 year old to prove citizenship or identity. If the newborn’s mother was not on MaineCare at the time of the birth, the newborn will have to prove citizenship and identity. Without this proof, the baby will not get MaineCare.
What do you need to do if your citizenship or identity can not be proved by Social Security?
First, make sure that DHHS sent the right information to Social Security. If that does not work, then you will have to prove both your citizenship and your identity. To do this, show DHHS original documents or certified copies. For example, get a certified copy of a birth certificate from the town or state where you were born. See list below for some of the types of documents that work for you.
Do I need to do this each year?
No. Once you have shown DHHS the documents that prove your citizenship and identity, you will not have to do it ever again in Maine. Even if you stop getting MaineCare, but some time later you get MaineCare again, you will not have to show these documents again.
Some documents you can use are:
U.S. passport (this also proves identity)
U.S. birth certificate
Official military record of service that shows U.S. place of birth