N.H.'s Medicaid Work Requirement Goes Before Federal Judge

Jul 23, 2019

Credit Sara Plourde / NHPR

Oral arguments are scheduled Tuesday morning in a federal lawsuit challenging New Hampshire's Medicaid work requirement.

The class-action lawsuit charges that the Trump administration exceeded its authority by allowing New Hampshire to implement the work requirement. 

The plaintiffs argue the work requirement does not further the original goals of the Medicaid program because implementation failures will inevitably lead to large numbers of people losing their health insurance unnecessarily.

Lawyers for the Trump administration and the state of New Hampshire, which has intervened in the case, disagree and argue that the work requirement will encourage upward mobility and make Medicaid more fiscally sustainable.

The case is before a federal judge in Washington D.C. who recently struck down similar work requirements in Arksansas and Kentucky.

New Hampshire's work requirement requires people to work or engage in another participating activity for at least 100 hours a month to remain on Medicaid expansion.

State officials recently delayed implementation of the work requirement until October after the majority of beneficiaries did not comply during the first month.