Medi-Cal

What kind of benefit is Medi-Cal?

The federal Medicaid program in California is known as Medi-Cal. This program pays for a variety of medical services for qualifying recipients at no or very low cost to those recipients. Services are usually managed through a private insurer contracted by the state; these insurers deliver services through approved providers in each county.

How is eligibility for Medi-Cal determined?

Seniors, adults, and children can qualify for Medi-Cal when their modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) income does not exceed 138% of the federal poverty level for that household size. MAGI is the total income from all income sources minus any MAGI-related deductions, which are determined by the IRS.

Significant vision impairment and disability, as well as pregnancy or refugee status, are contributing factors when determining eligibility. Legal U.S. citizenship or residency as well as residency in the state of California are also prerequisites. 

Children receiving Kin-GAP benefits are eligible for Medi-Cal while they reside in California. Caregivers who are already enrolled and receiving benefits from other public assistance programs will be categorically eligible for Medi-Cal. Children in foster care and receiving Medi-Cal at the time they turn 18 remain eligible until the age of 26. Children in foster or kinship care may receive specialized Medi-Cal services based on their specific needs or disabilities.

How do I apply for Medi-Cal?

California’s Medicaid application can be completed online via the Covered California Website and in person at any county social services office. Applicants who prefer a printable version can access the mail-in streamlined application.

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