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Health & Public Benefits
Some low income people are eligible for Mainecare. Most other people with low incomes can get help paying for health insurance. The IRS gives instant tax credits to help with the cost. There are many places to get help finding health insurance:
Immigrants who are not official U.S. citizens may be eligible for Supplemental Security Income, or SSI, if they meet certain qualifications. SSI can help people who are elderly or disabled, and have little or no income.
Maine DHHS is offering this online tool My Maine Connection as another way to apply for benefits. You may still apply in person, if you prefer, or over the phone (in programs that allow phone applications). But this is now the most streamlined way to apply.
This year, you won’t have to worry about losing your benefits if you get a big tax refund. Starting in 2011, any tax refunds you get will not affect most public benefits, or how much you get! Under the law passed in December 2010:
LIHEAP funding continues to be lower than in previous years. This will mean that more households will be turning to local heating assistance programs after their LIHEAP money runs out. Here is a summary of the programs we know about - followed by information about how to access local programs.
Can I Get Free Care at the Hospital? Yes. All hospitals in Maine must give free care to poor people without health insurance. You have to meet these criteria: Your income is below the guidelines, you don’t have other health insurance coverage, you need services that are medically necessary.
The Transitional Transportation Program helps working parents pay for transportation for 12 months after they can no longer get TANF because of earnings from a job. If you get PaS benefits, instead of TANF, the same rules apply to you.