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Florida Supreme Court Rules Medicaid Liens Cannot Be Applied To Future Medical Expenses

On July 5, 2018, the Florida Supreme Court issued its ruling in the case of Giraldo v. Agency for Health Care Administration. The case dealt with the federal Medicaid Act, a joint federal-state cooperative program that helps states provide medical services to residents who cannot otherwise afford treatment; the Medicaid Act is part of the broader Social Security Act.

On Thursday, the Florida Supreme Court held that “under federal law, AHCA (the Agency for Health Care Administration) may only reach the past medical expense portion of a Medicaid recipient’s tort recovery to satisfy its Medicaid lien.” In deciding to limit the lien rights of AHCA, the Court cited the federal Medicaid Act’s “anti-lien” provision, noting that the federal Medicaid Act preempts the Florida Medicaid statute on this issue. The ruling is a major victory for plaintiffs with severe injuries or large future medical treatment costs; the ruling prevents AHCA from putting a Medicaid lien on a plaintiff’s future medical treatment received under a settlement or judgment.

Joe Zarzaur is a Board Certified Civil Trial Attorney whose firm is dedicated to promoting community safety since 2007. OUR AREAS OF PRACTICE: Serious Personal Injury, Product Defect, Auto Accidents, Cycling Accidents, Medical Malpractice, Products Liability, Wrongful Death, Boat and Jet Ski Accidents, Slip and Fall Injuries, and more. Licensed in Alabama and Florida.

If you have any questions about this recent Florida Supreme Court ruling or about an injury that you or someone you know has sustained as a result of someone else’s negligence, please do not hesitate to contact Board Certified Civil Trial Attorney, Joe Zarzaur, and the firm of Zarzaur Law, P.A. at 855-hirejoe or on the web at