Most lawfully present immigrants who meet Medicaid and CHIP program requirements, such as income and state residency, can enroll in Medicaid or CHIP after they have been in the United States for five years or more.
Some groups of lawfully present immigrants do not have to wait five years before they may enroll in Medicaid and CHIP. These include refugees, asylees, and other humanitarian immigrants; veterans and military families; and pregnant women and children in some states.
Some lawfully present immigrants who are authorized to work in the United States cannot enroll in Medicaid, even if they have been in the country for five or more years.
In most states, undocumented immigrants may not enroll in Medicaid or CHIP coverage. However, about a dozen states cover all children or some pregnant people or adults regardless of immigration status. See our state fact sheets for eligibility information. (42 C.F.R. §§ 435.406, 457.320.)