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  Updated Rules Regarding Citizenship

Due to changes under the Federal Deficit Reduction Act, individuals who claim to be a U.S citizen are required to provide proof of citizenship, nationality and identity when they apply or complete an annual review form for Medicaid benefits on or after July 1, 2006. The SC Department of Health and Human Services is advising individuals who currently receive or may need to apply for Medicaid to begin collecting the appropriate documents now.

Be Advised: The federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Systems (CMS) announced that those eligible for Medicare and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) are exempt from the new proof of citizenship, nationality and identity requirement.

CMS have also recently expanded the list of documents we can use as proof.

We can use one of the following to verify citizenship or nationality and identity:

  • US Passport,
  • Certificate of Naturalization (N-550 or 570), or
  • Certificate of United States Citizenship (N-560 or 561)

    Or, one of these along with a picture ID
    (newly approved documents in bold) :

    • US Birth Certificate
    • Certificate of Birth Abroad (FS-545)
    • United States Citizen Identification Card (I-197 or 179)
    • Report of Birth Abroad of a Citizen of the United States (FS-240)
    • Final Adoption Decree - must show the child's name and US place of birth
    • Evidence of US Government employment before June 1, 1976
    • Official Military record of service - must show a US place of birth
    • Extract of hospital record on hospital letterhead established at time of birth and created at least 5 years prior to the Medicaid application and indicating a US place of birth
    • Life or health or other insurance record created at least 5 years prior to the Medicaid application and indicating a US place of birth
    • Federal or State census record showing US citizenship or a US place of birth (generally for persons born from 1900-1950. To request this, you must complete form BC-600 and submit it to the US Census Bureau.)
    • Tribal census records
    • Medical (clinic, doctor, hospital) or Institution admission papers created 5 years prior to initial application indicating a US place of birth
    • Written affidavit from two individuals, one not related, who have personal knowledge of the events establishing the applicant's claim of citizenship.

    The following can be used to verify identification:

    • Certificate of Indian Blood if it has a picture or other identifying information
    • Driver's License
    • School ID card with photo
    • US military card or draft record
    • ID card issued by Federal, State or Local government that contains the same information as a Driver's license
    • Military dependent ID card
    • Native American Tribal document
    • US Coast Guard Merchant Mariner card
    • School records including nursery or day care records for those under 16 that indicate the date and place of birth and parent(s') name.

    These documents are not needed until you receive your annual review form. For those already eligible, a recipient must demonstrate good faith efforts to obtain required documents and DHHS will grant a "reasonable opportunity" period to obtain the documentation. To assist with verification in the future, DHHS also is working with DHEC and DMV to develop a system to electronically access citizenship information.

    We urge any current Medicaid recipient to contact their caseworker or local Medicaid office at the time of review if they have difficulty obtaining the required information.

    Please check this website for continued updates since the Department is currently awaiting additional guidance from CMS that could amend this list of acceptable documents.

    Children may not be required to provide a picture ID.