Two states join New Jersey lawsuit against SCHIP restrictions

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The attorney generals of Connecticut and Massachusetts filed a joint amicus brief in the US District Court in support of New Jersey's challenge to new restrictions for the State Children's Health Insurance Programs (SCHIP).

The attorney generals of Connecticut and Massachusetts filed a joint amicus brief in the US District Court in support of New Jersey's challenge to new restrictions for the State Children's Health Insurance Programs (SCHIP).

The restrictions, which need to be implemented by August 2008, were announced to all 50 states in an August 17, 2007, letter from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). The letter informed states of several new requirements for children in families who earn between 250% and 300% of the federal poverty level to receive federal reimbursement for health coverage.

For example, before expanding coverage to these families, states must prove that at least 95% of eligible children whose parents earn 200% of the federal poverty line or below are enrolled in either SCHIP or Medicaid. In addition, states must implement a one-year waiting period before children are allowed to enroll in SCHIP.

New Jersey has claimed that the CMS letter is a violation of the Administrative Procedure Act.

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