By Fredrick P. Niemann, Esq. of Hanlon Niemann & Wright, a Freehold, NJ Medicaid Eligibility Attorney

At a minimum, due process requires a government agency to explain, in terms comprehensible to the claimant, exactly what the agency proposes to do and why the agency is taking this action… If calculations of a claimant’s income or resources are involved, New Jersey must set forth the calculations it used to arrive at its decision, i.e. explain what funds it considers the claimant to have and what the relevant eligibility limits are. This detailed information is needed to enable claimants to understand what the agency has decided, so that they may asses the correctness of the agency’s decision, make an informed decision as to whether to appeal, and be prepared for the issues to be addressed at the hearing.

Some agencies of the government will take the position that notice inadequacies are unimportant because claimants can call the agency for more detailed information. This position has been repeatedly rejected by the federal courts… The burden of providing adequate notice rests with the state, and it cannot shift that burden to the individual by providing inadequate notice and inviting the claimant to call to receive complete notice. As the Circuit Court of Appeal has observed…, public assistance recipients are often less capable than other people of taking affirmative actions to protect their interests. The result of requiring claimants to make phone calls to obtain adequate notice would be that only the aggressive would receive due process, whereas the applicable regulations require the state to provide due process for all claimants.

To discuss your NJ Medicaid matter, please contact Fredrick P. Niemann, Esq. toll-free at (855) 376-5291 or email him at fniemann@hnlawfirm.com.  Please ask us about our video conferencing consultations if you are unable to come to our office.