Minnesota finds Medicaid law in violation of equal protection clause
It’s important to recognize that not all state laws comport with federal laws and when they do not, it takes a lawyer to get the state back on the right track. A case in point, in 2011, Minnesota passed a law reducing the pay of relative personal care attendants (PCA) to 80 percent of non-relative PCAs because the state held that relatives have a moral obligation to help family members and would do so even though their pay was cut. A Minnesota appeals court saw differently and in December of 2012 held that the law violated the state’s equal protection clause and did so by making a distinction based on assumptions rather than fact. Rajiv Nagaich took on a similar case with the Washington Supreme Court in Jenkins v. DSHS in which Washington state made a similar claim about compensation for live-in care providers that reduced benefits to a disabled recipient by 15 percent based on the fact that they lived with the caregiver. That case which was won in 2007 and the case in Minnesota illustrate how important it is to hire an elder law attorney rather than an estate planning attorney for asset protection purposes.