Two immigration groups have filed legal complaints against the Obama administration for kicking over one hundred thousand Obamacare customers off their insurance plans without sending notices in their native language, Modern Healthcare reports.
The Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights (ICIRR) and Philadelphia’s Southeast Asian Mutual Assistance Associations Coalition (SEAMACC) have both filed complaints with Health and Human Services’ Office of Civil Rights.
The groups believe that the U.S. government’s move to end the health plans of customers who failed to prove their legal immigration or citizenship status violate customers’ rights as (illegal) immigrants.
On September 30, roughly 115,000 immigrants that were on obamacare had their health insurance terminated because they failed to prove their legal status in the U.S.
The administration said it first reached out to each customer between eight and ten times through mail, phone and e-mail in an attempt to get them to provide their legal documents on HealthCare.gov before finally kicking them off their plans.
When the immigrants found out that they lost their health coverage they became enraged and demanded justice. They proclaimed they were discriminated against because they couldn’t read the requests that were left in both English and Spanish asking for proof of a legal status.
A special enrollment period was immediately created for the customers that failed to prove their legal status. The special enrollment period allows them to sign up for new coverage at HealthCare.gov again at any time, as opposed to waiting for the open enrollment period to begin again on November 15.
This still wasn’t good enough. The complaints of discrimination filed with the Health and Human Services’ Office of Civil Rights continued.
In the complaints, the groups worry that the (illegal) immigrants who were finally kicked off their plans will temporarily lose access to taxpayer subsidies for their coverage.
“Many of ICIRR’s clients are low-income clients and are elderly or disabled,” the complaint reads.
“If these individuals lose their subsidies, they will not be able to afford the health insurance they need.”
The groups claim that some clients submitted the requested immigration or citizenship documents, but for some reason these documents were not processed.
What are your thoughts? Comment below.