On Monday, December 18, 2017, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed into law the "Pooled Trust Notification Bill." This legislation will require -- for the first time -- that Medicaid applicants and recipients who have a spend-down be given notice in plain language that explains the availability of supplemental needs trusts to eliminate the spend-down for people with income above the Medicaid income limits. The notice shall include information on how to enroll in a trust and how to request the local Dept. of Social Services to rebudget income.
Please join NYLAG in giving huge thanks to Assembly Member Richard N. Gottfried, Chair of the Assembly Health Committee, who authored and sponsored the original bill, and to Senator Rob Ortt, Chair of the Senate Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities Committee, who co-sponsored the bill in the state Senate. We also thank the NYS Association of Independent Living Centers, the Center for Disability Rights, and the Empire Justice Center who all worked with NYLAG and other organizations to enact this law.
§ 366, subd. 5 (f) . Eligibility
The department shall provide written notice under this paragraph to an applicant for or recipient of medical assistance who is or reasonably appears to be eligible for medical assistance under subparagraph two of paragraph (c) of subdivision one of this section, except for having income exceeding applicable income levels. The notice shall explain, in plain language, the rules for depositing income in a trust that may enable an applicant or recipient who is disabled to become eligible for medical assistance under clause (iii) of subparagraph two of paragraph (b) of subdivision two of this section. The notice shall be included with the eligibility notice provided to such applicants and recipients. The notice shall include information on how to enroll in such a trust and how to request that the local social services district rebudget medical assistance based on participation in such a trust. This paragraph shall not be construed to change any criterion for eligibility for medical assistance.
Social Services Law § 366, subd. 5(f) and (g), as amended by L. 2017, ch.475, effective June 16, 2018. (To read the bill and information about its enactment, at this link enter Bill No. A5175 and click SEARCH. Year should be "2017")
The final language of the law was changed slightly from the original bills passed by the NYS Assembly and Senate, as a result of negotiations between the legislature and the Governor's office.
The law states that the change is effective 180 days after it becomes law, which would be June 18, 2018. However, the subdivision of the law that is amended requires State Dept. of Health to adopt rules and regulations necessary to carry out the provisions of this section of law. If the Department believes regulations are necessary to implement this law, this may delay implementation beyond six months. Social Services Law § 366, subd. 5(g) as amended.