Was accidentally placed on Medicaid.

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Imadeastupidmistake
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Joined: Tue Dec 05, 2017 5:56 pm

Was accidentally placed on Medicaid.

Post by Imadeastupidmistake » Tue Dec 05, 2017 6:02 pm

Let me preface this with that I'm a moron and I feel awful. I just discovered I was accidentally placed on Medicaid.

My story goes back to last year. I procrastinated and filled out my application for my states ACA marketplace on the very last day. I filled out the form and when it came time to enter in my financial information, I entered in that I made 950+ biweekly. Or at least I thought that's what I entered. I signed up for a plan immediately.

Two months later, I went to the Dr and they couldn't accept me as a patient because I had a secondary insurance that was conflicting with my primary. I had no clue what they were talking about until I did some research. Turns out I was placed on Medicaid. I knew I didn't make a ton (about $25000 a year in 2016 and $22,000 for 2017), but I didn't think I made so little as to qualify for Medicaid, but I figured since the state put me on Medicaid, I qualified. I canceled my other plan and stuck with the Medicaid.

Fast forward to now. While filling out my application this year, I notice a glaring error on my application when it auto-filled my financial data. It said I made 950+ MONTHLY. I don't know how this happened. Now it makes sense why I qualified for Medicaid. I don't know how this happened. I'm freaking out. I didn't mean to do this. I don't know what to do.

Any advice on what to do or what's going to happen? I didn't mean to have this happen.

mouses
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Joined: Sat Oct 24, 2015 12:24 am

Re: Was accidentally placed on Medicaid.

Post by mouses » Tue Dec 05, 2017 11:17 pm

How much in bills did Medicaid pay? You seem likely to be out of pocket that amount, so that would be my primary worry. I'm guessing it is not a large sum, or you would have mentioned it.

I would sign up for the ACA plan you want for 2018.

There must be a phone number you can call for help with straightening 2017 out, assuming those people haven't all been let go. :annoyed

Imadeastupidmistake
Posts: 8
Joined: Tue Dec 05, 2017 5:56 pm

Re: Was accidentally placed on Medicaid.

Post by Imadeastupidmistake » Wed Dec 06, 2017 7:40 am

Yeah, the bill amount was about $600 or so. So, I do expect to pay that out of pocket, which I should since I wasn't supposed to be on the program.

Actually, signing up for ACA this year is how I found out about this error. But yeah, I am signed up with a new plan for 2018.

Yeah, I'll dig around and see who I can call to straighten this out.

Shallowpockets
Posts: 288
Joined: Fri Nov 20, 2015 10:26 am

Re: Was accidentally placed on Medicaid.

Post by Shallowpockets » Wed Dec 06, 2017 8:06 am

If you are now on ACA going forward and have corrected your income in regards to that you will be OK. I would not try and correct 2017 error now over the phone. Probably nothing to be done, now. When you file your taxes in the spring, they will have the mechanism in place to rectify the error.
It is obvious that not everyone makes what they say they will when they apply. People lose jobs, they get jobs. They get bonuses, they have kids. Things change. This especially happens at the lower ends of the spectrum. Not everyone is static in their jobs making the same year after year.
Next year it can all be worked out in the fashion for which it was designed.

Imadeastupidmistake
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Re: Was accidentally placed on Medicaid.

Post by Imadeastupidmistake » Wed Dec 06, 2017 8:31 am

My worry is that I will get in trouble if I wait. Others have told me they think I should call and get out ahead of this and at least alert them to the error now since it will look bad if I wait.

I feel so bad about this.

What you say makes sense to me and what others have said makes sense.

Shallowpockets
Posts: 288
Joined: Fri Nov 20, 2015 10:26 am

Re: Was accidentally placed on Medicaid.

Post by Shallowpockets » Wed Dec 06, 2017 1:52 pm

If you are worried, just give them a call. Then you know you tried.
I had an overpayment back from Medicare once. They had sent me a check and a few weeks later an electronic payment. I called to rectify and they had no mechanism to take care of it. Nothing. The woman said that she guessed I was ahead now by $249. So I guess I can wait until it never happens or they catch up to me. What's the worst that could happen?
If you talk to them on the phone and it goes that sort of way, send yourself an email note about it detailing your effort and save it for if you need it.

bighatnohorse
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Joined: Thu Oct 13, 2016 4:04 pm

Re: Was accidentally placed on Medicaid.

Post by bighatnohorse » Wed Dec 06, 2017 2:50 pm

If and when you call them, have a pencil and paper handy. Be sure to get the name of the person that you speak with and what department they work in.
Tell them your predicament.
Ask when you might hear back from them - and who you should call if you don't hear from them again.
Make notes about what was said (as best you can).
Open a file folder and store this information.

If you have further communication with them, be sure to open your file and make more notes.
Sometimes government clerks make mistake.
You're trying to do the right thing but sometimes that can backfire on you.

Imadeastupidmistake
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Joined: Tue Dec 05, 2017 5:56 pm

Re: Was accidentally placed on Medicaid.

Post by Imadeastupidmistake » Wed Dec 06, 2017 3:00 pm

Shallowpockets wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 1:52 pm
If you are worried, just give them a call. Then you know you tried.
I had an overpayment back from Medicare once. They had sent me a check and a few weeks later an electronic payment. I called to rectify and they had no mechanism to take care of it. Nothing. The woman said that she guessed I was ahead now by $249. So I guess I can wait until it never happens or they catch up to me. What's the worst that could happen?
If you talk to them on the phone and it goes that sort of way, send yourself an email note about it detailing your effort and save it for if you need it.
I think giving them a call is what I'm leaning towards. I feel like I should at least try.

As far as the worst that could happen? I'm mostly worried about jail. I did not mean for this to happen and I'm just absolutely terrified. It's been all I've been thinking about since I discovered the error yesterday.

That's good advice from both you and Bighathorse. I will be sure to detail and write down everything and save it for later. Thank you.

ResearchMed
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Re: Was accidentally placed on Medicaid.

Post by ResearchMed » Wed Dec 06, 2017 3:30 pm

Imadeastupidmistake wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 3:00 pm
Shallowpockets wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 1:52 pm
If you are worried, just give them a call. Then you know you tried.
I had an overpayment back from Medicare once. They had sent me a check and a few weeks later an electronic payment. I called to rectify and they had no mechanism to take care of it. Nothing. The woman said that she guessed I was ahead now by $249. So I guess I can wait until it never happens or they catch up to me. What's the worst that could happen?
If you talk to them on the phone and it goes that sort of way, send yourself an email note about it detailing your effort and save it for if you need it.
I think giving them a call is what I'm leaning towards. I feel like I should at least try.

As far as the worst that could happen? I'm mostly worried about jail. I did not mean for this to happen and I'm just absolutely terrified. It's been all I've been thinking about since I discovered the error yesterday.

That's good advice from both you and Bighathorse. I will be sure to detail and write down everything and save it for later. Thank you.
Jail?

If that is a serious statement/concern, then unless there is MUCH more to this story than you've told us, that really isn't likely.
(I'm assuming that you are here in the USA legally, and there isn't some other totally *unrelated* reason why you are fearful of law enforcement.)

The worst situation is likely to be financial. Either a penalty of some sort, or needing to buy a very high priced health insurance plan for a while. Make sure you get SOME sort of health insurance asap, so you aren't at risk of having no coverage at all if you do get very sick [and please, try to make sure you don't get very sick from stress - if you are really as stressed as you now sound]. You also don't want to risk needing to pay out of pocket for huge medical bills if you are not insured and do get very sick. But that's unlikely, but not impossible.

You made a mistake. Mistakes happen, alas.
At least you have recognized it before you needed any serious medical care. That probably would have complicated things considerably.

Please do keep us posted so that we can offer suggestions.

Good luck.

RM
This signature is a placebo. You are in the control group.

Imadeastupidmistake
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Re: Was accidentally placed on Medicaid.

Post by Imadeastupidmistake » Wed Dec 06, 2017 3:47 pm

ResearchMed wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 3:30 pm

Jail?

If that is a serious statement/concern, then unless there is MUCH more to this story than you've told us, that really isn't likely.
(I'm assuming that you are here in the USA legally, and there isn't some other totally *unrelated* reason why you are fearful of law enforcement.)

The worst situation is likely to be financial. Either a penalty of some sort, or needing to buy a very high priced health insurance plan for a while. Make sure you get SOME sort of health insurance asap, so you aren't at risk of having no coverage at all if you do get very sick [and please, try to make sure you don't get very sick from stress - if you are really as stressed as you now sound]. You also don't want to risk needing to pay out of pocket for huge medical bills if you are not insured and do get very sick. But that's unlikely, but not impossible.

You made a mistake. Mistakes happen, alas.
At least you have recognized it before you needed any serious medical care. That probably would have complicated things considerably.

Please do keep us posted so that we can offer suggestions.

Good luck.

RM
This is the entire story. I'm not sure about the rules regarding this type of thing, but I do know it's illegal to be on Medicaid if you don't qualify which is why I'm concerned. Yes, it was a mistake, but I don't know if they make distinctions about this kind of thing. It's just a really stressful situation and I tend to be a worrier by nature.

I signed up for an ACA plan for 2018 and currently, I'm signed up for a short-term health insurance plan to tide me over til January.

Thank you for taking the time to read about my situation. I really appreciate it.

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White Coat Investor
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Re: Was accidentally placed on Medicaid.

Post by White Coat Investor » Wed Dec 06, 2017 4:49 pm

Nobody actually verified your income? That's reassuring.
1) Invest you must 2) Time is your friend 3) Impulse is your enemy | 4) Basic arithmetic works 5) Stick to simplicity 6) Stay the course

Imadeastupidmistake
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Re: Was accidentally placed on Medicaid.

Post by Imadeastupidmistake » Wed Dec 06, 2017 5:17 pm

White Coat Investor wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 4:49 pm
Nobody actually verified your income? That's reassuring.
Apparently not. When I filled out my ACA application last year, I was only applying to check if I qualified for subsidies since my current (at the time) insurance plan increased $120+ per month. It didn't notify me for any subsidies that I qualified for, so I just signed up to the cheapest ACA plan I could afford. Two or three months later is when I was notified I was covered under Medicaid at the DR's office. When I found this out, I figured I qualified, because why would I be accepted if I didn't? Then yesterday happens, and I notice the error, which to me, says that nobody checked.

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BolderBoy
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Re: Was accidentally placed on Medicaid.

Post by BolderBoy » Wed Dec 06, 2017 5:18 pm

Imadeastupidmistake wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 3:47 pm
This is the entire story. I'm not sure about the rules regarding this type of thing, but I do know it's illegal to be on Medicaid if you don't qualify which is why I'm concerned. Yes, it was a mistake, but I don't know if they make distinctions about this kind of thing. It's just a really stressful situation and I tend to be a worrier by nature.
But the circumstances under which you got on Medicaid are what matter. You aren't going to jail based on the facts you related to us, here.

And the odds are that you are NOT the first person to whom this happened.
"Never underestimate one's capacity to overestimate one's abilities" - The Dunning-Kruger Effect

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White Coat Investor
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Re: Was accidentally placed on Medicaid.

Post by White Coat Investor » Wed Dec 06, 2017 5:29 pm

Imadeastupidmistake wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 5:17 pm
White Coat Investor wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 4:49 pm
Nobody actually verified your income? That's reassuring.
Apparently not. When I filled out my ACA application last year, I was only applying to check if I qualified for subsidies since my current (at the time) insurance plan increased $120+ per month. It didn't notify me for any subsidies that I qualified for, so I just signed up to the cheapest ACA plan I could afford. Two or three months later is when I was notified I was covered under Medicaid at the DR's office. When I found this out, I figured I qualified, because why would I be accepted if I didn't? Then yesterday happens, and I notice the error, which to me, says that nobody checked.
Sorry, the reassuring was supposed to come across as sarcasm.

Clearly nobody checked your income. I think the verification process is state specific. I get the impression it is very hard in my state given how many patients tell me they're in the process. Doesn't sound like it is very hard in your state.
1) Invest you must 2) Time is your friend 3) Impulse is your enemy | 4) Basic arithmetic works 5) Stick to simplicity 6) Stay the course

Imadeastupidmistake
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Joined: Tue Dec 05, 2017 5:56 pm

Re: Was accidentally placed on Medicaid.

Post by Imadeastupidmistake » Wed Dec 06, 2017 5:31 pm

BolderBoy wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 5:18 pm
Imadeastupidmistake wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 3:47 pm
This is the entire story. I'm not sure about the rules regarding this type of thing, but I do know it's illegal to be on Medicaid if you don't qualify which is why I'm concerned. Yes, it was a mistake, but I don't know if they make distinctions about this kind of thing. It's just a really stressful situation and I tend to be a worrier by nature.
But the circumstances under which you got on Medicaid are what matter. You aren't going to jail based on the facts you related to us, here.

And the odds are that you are NOT the first person to whom this happened.
Everyone in my personal life is telling me to calm down about it. Posting here has eased my mind a bit.

I searched all over the internet to see if I could find anything even close to my story and came up empty, but I'm sure someone mistakenly gotten on Medicaid has happened before.

Imadeastupidmistake
Posts: 8
Joined: Tue Dec 05, 2017 5:56 pm

Re: Was accidentally placed on Medicaid.

Post by Imadeastupidmistake » Wed Dec 06, 2017 5:34 pm

White Coat Investor wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 5:29 pm
Imadeastupidmistake wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 5:17 pm
White Coat Investor wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 4:49 pm
Nobody actually verified your income? That's reassuring.
Apparently not. When I filled out my ACA application last year, I was only applying to check if I qualified for subsidies since my current (at the time) insurance plan increased $120+ per month. It didn't notify me for any subsidies that I qualified for, so I just signed up to the cheapest ACA plan I could afford. Two or three months later is when I was notified I was covered under Medicaid at the DR's office. When I found this out, I figured I qualified, because why would I be accepted if I didn't? Then yesterday happens, and I notice the error, which to me, says that nobody checked.
Sorry, the reassuring was supposed to come across as sarcasm.

Clearly nobody checked your income. I think the verification process is state specific. I get the impression it is very hard in my state given how many patients tell me they're in the process. Doesn't sound like it is very hard in your state.
I read into it as sarcasm, but decided to give a serious reply just in case lol. Yeah, I'm in a fairly liberalish state, and with how this occured, I'm guessing it's not hard to get onto it, but maybe my mishap was some type of fluke.

donall
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Re: Was accidentally placed on Medicaid.

Post by donall » Wed Dec 06, 2017 11:16 pm

If you were approved for Medicaid, then your income should have been verified no matter what amount you input. Medicaid uses monthly, not yearly income, so someone whose income varies may also be approved if the last two months have a lower amount than subsequent months. Income is often verified annually and if someone is found to have income over the limit they are often given a deadline of a few months before they are no longer in Medicaid and have to find insurance elsewhere. It sounds like your income was low enough that your health insurance would have been heavily subsidized and you may have actually cost taxpayers less in Medicaid than if you had subsidized insurance.

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