Issue Brief: Update on Private Enforcement of the Medicaid Act

Issue Brief: Update on Private Enforcement of the Medicaid Act

Executive Summary

Over the years, Medicaid beneficiaries have asserted claims under the Supremacy Clause of the U.S. Constitution and 42 U.S.C. § 1983 in litigation to enjoin state violations of the Medicaid Act. This Fact Sheet will summarize the history of § 1983 and Supremacy Clause enforcement, provide current point-in-time assessments of Medicaid Act enforceability, and conclude by offering recommendations for lawyers who are considering asserting Medicaid claims in federal court. Of particular import, the Supreme Court has just granted certiorari to decide whether private individuals can bring a claim under the Supremacy Clause to enjoin state actions that are inconsistent with the federal Medicaid Act.

This issue brief will be updated and expanded in:  Jane Perkins, Pin the Tail on the Donkey: Beneficiary Enforcement of the Medicaid Act Over Time, 9 St. Louis U. J. Health L. & Poly (forthcoming 2016).

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