91.7 Ann Arbor/Detroit 104.1 Grand Rapids 91.3 Port Huron 89.7 Lansing 91.1 Flint
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

First work requirement deadline on Saturday for Healthy Michigan Plan insurance

Tracy Samilton
Michigan Radio

This Saturday is the first work requirement deadline for people with Healthy Michigan Plan insurance, which is provided under the state's Medicaid expansion program. 

A new law requires people to work, volunteer or job search 80 hours a month to keep their Healthy Michigan Plan insurance.

State and county officials say they've been telling people about the Healthy Michigan Plan work requirement for months, with letters, pop-up notices on their insurance accounts online, and the like. 

And there are dozens of possible exemptions from the requirement, for people who are pregnant, caring for young children, or who are too sick to work, for example. 

Even so, officials fear that thousands will fail to comply.

They will lose their insurance after three months of not submitting their hours or applying for an exemption. State officials expect to see enrollment numbers decline in April and May.

People can get back on the Healthy Michigan Plan after a month, though, if they begin complying, or apply for an exemption. 

A federal lawsuit challenging the work requirement is pending, with briefs expected to be filed in April. 

Governor Gretchen Whitmer has urged the judge in that case to issue an injunction to halt the work requirements until the lawsuit has made its way through the court system.

Tracy Samilton covers energy and transportation, including the auto industry and the business response to climate change for Michigan Radio. She began her career at Michigan Radio as an intern, where she was promptly “bitten by the radio bug,” and never recovered.