My brother was on Medi-Cal (Medicaid) when he died. Do I have to notify anybody he has died? : Law of Office of William J. Sweeney

My brother was on Medi-Cal (Medicaid) when he died. Do I have to notify anybody he has died?

by William J. Sweeney on 03/10/15

Medi-Cal is a federally subsidized California program that pays for medical services and premiums for people who are unable to pay for them themselves. In all other states the program is known as Medicaid.

When someone on Medi-Cal dies, the agency handling his case, typically the county welfare or social services department, should be notified right away.

When a recipient of Medi-Cal dies, their estate, or the recipient of their estate, may be required to repay the cost of care the recipient received. If repayment is required it would come from the decedent’s estate and would not exceed the value of the estate. There are some exemptions that might delay, or even forgive repayment. There are also provisions in the law for a waiver or reduction of repayment when it would create a "substantial hardship".

Aside from notifying the local agency, under California law, the person handling a decedent’s estate is required to give Notice of Death to the California Department of Health Care Services within 90 days of date of death. Along with that notice you are required to enclose a copy of the Death Certificate. After giving the notice, you will either receive a letter from the Department of Health Care Services indicating they do not have a claim against the estate, or may receive a claim for repayment. Any request for a waiver for repayment must be filed promptly as there are deadlines.

The Notice of Death must be given with every death, whether or not the individual received Medi-Cal. If you are the person responsible for handling the decedent’s estate, failure to give the appropriate notice could expose you to liability.

You should always contact an attorney experienced in handling Trusts and Estates to make sure that you have complied with statutory requirements to avoid problems later on.

William J. Sweeney

Attorney at Law

915 Highland Pointe Dr., Ste. 250

Roseville, CA 95678

(916) 786-2011

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