Florida Healthy Kids

Eligibility and Citizenship

The Florida Legislature has passed a new law that will help many immigrant children who lawfully reside (PDF) in Florida obtain health insurance coverage. Prior to this change, some non-citizen children living in Florida had to be lawfully in the United States at least five years before they qualified for health insurance through the Florida KidCare program. After the law goes into effect on July 1, 2016, there will no longer be a waiting period for these children.


Most children who were previously denied subsidized Florida KidCare coverage because of the five-year waiting period will need to reapply beginning July 1, 2016 by calling 1-888-540-5437 to update their information. Children whose applications are submitted on or after June 1, 2016 will be automatically reevaluated based on the new law — and Florida KidCare will reach out to families with children who are likely to be eligible.

Some children who were previously denied because of the five-year rule may be currently enrolled in a health plan through www.healthcare.gov. Their families can begin a transfer to Florida KidCare by updating their information with the federal marketplace by visiting www.healthcare.gov or calling 1-800-318-2596 at any point after July 1, 2016. Applications will not be transferred automatically during the next federal marketplace open enrollment period that begins on November 1, 2016.

If a child is enrolled through employer-based or other private coverage, they can apply at any time, however, Florida KidCare coverage will not begin until the other coverage has ended.

For more information about the new legislation, please visit https://www.flsenate.gov/Session/Bill/2016/5101.

Lawfully Residing Non-Citizen Children

No Change 5-Year Wait Eliminated Newly Eligible
  • Refugee
  • Asylee
  • Cuban/Haitian Entrant
  • Granted Withholding of Deportation or Removal
  • Victims of Human Trafficking
  • Unmarried Dependents of Non-Citizens Serving in the US Military
  • Members of Federally Recognized Indian Tribe of American Indian Born in Canada
  • Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR)
  • Paroled into the US for at Least One Year
  • Battered Child or Child of Battered Person
  • Granted Relief Under the Convention Against Torture (CAT)
  • Temporary Protected Status (TPS)
  • Deferred Enforcement Departure (DED)
  • Deferred Action
  • Paroled into US for Less than One Year
  • Individual with Non-Immigrant Status
  • Administrative Stay of Removal
  • Lawful Temporary Resident
  • Family Unity

Newly Eligible - Applicant

  • Applicant for LPR
  • Applicant for Asylum
  • Applicant for Special Immigrant Juvenile Status
  • Applicant for Victim of Trafficking VISA
  • Applicant for Withholding of Deportation or Removal

Newly Eligible - Employment Authorization Required

  • Applicant for Temporary Protected Status
  • Registry Applicants
  • Order of Supervision
  • Applicant for Cancellation of Removal or Suspension of Deportation
  • Applicant for Legalization Under IRCA
  • Applicant for LPR Under the LIFE Act

Note: Column two titled “5-Year Wait Eliminated” are immigration statuses that were considered “Qualified” prior to July 1, 2016, but were subject to a waiting period. Column three titled “Newly Eligible” are groups of immigration statuses that are now potentially eligible beginning July 1, 2016, but were deemed “Non-Qualified” prior to that date regardless of length of stay in the country.

FAQs

1. Who does the new law apply to?
Non-citizen children, up to their 19th birthday, who reside in Florida, meet the Florida KidCare income guidelines, and have the necessary documentation to prove they are lawfully present in the United States.

2. My child is enrolled in the Florida Healthy Kids or MediKids full-pay program but I think he/she may now be eligible for reduced-cost coverage. What should I do?
Currently enrolled full-pay children that become eligible for subsidized coverage because of this new legislation will be automatically changed to lower cost coverage effective July 1 and sent a letter. If you have not received a letter by July, but believe your child may be eligible for subsidized coverage, you may contact 1-800-821-5437 to find out if your child now qualifies.

3. My child was denied because of the five-year rule. What should I do to find out if he/she qualifies now?
Please call 1-888-540-5437 to update your information and find out if your child is now eligible.

4. How may a child who is covered through the federal marketplace, www.healthcare.gov switch to Florida KidCare?
In order to transfer a child to Florida KidCare, families must update their information with the federal marketplace and receive a new eligibility assessment. Applications will not be transferred automatically during the next federal marketplace open enrollment period that begins on November 1, 2016. Families can visit www.healthcare.gov or call 1-800-318-2596 at any time to update their information.

5. How may a child who is covered through employer-based or private coverage switch to Florida KidCare?
If a child is enrolled through employer-based or other private coverage, they can apply at any time, however, Florida KidCare coverage will not begin until the other coverage has ended.