Legal Information: Federal

Immigration

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I am undocumented. Can I receive welfare and Medicaid?

It depends. If you are a battered undocumented woman whose husband has applied for legal permanent residency on your behalf you are eligible for the same benefits as a legal permanent resident.

If you have applied for legal permanent residency under the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), you are also eligible for the same benefits as a legal permanent resident.

If you are not eligible to apply for legal permanent residency, you will not be eligible for most forms of public assistance or welfare. However, you are still eligible for emergency Medicaid. Contact an immigration or domestic violence advocate to help you find "safe" hospitals that will not report your undocumented status. You also are eligible for services from community groups, such as food distribution by churches, and assistance from domestic violence shelters.