Get Legal Help

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Call Our Helpline Today

Toll Free Helpline:  1-800-274-3258
Intake hours:  Monday, Wednesday, Friday from 8:00 AM - 8:00 PM

Through the Helpline, PHLP provides free legal help to Pennsylvanians seeking to get or keep Medicaid coverage or services.  If you are not able to call us during our normal intake hours, please e-mail us at staff@phlp.org to request help. Learn what to expect from our Helpline and intake process by reading below. 

  • We cannot accept every case that comes through our Helpline, but we will do our best to provide information and referrals when we cannot accept your case. Our mission is to help individuals get and keep Medicaid coverage and services. Below are some common examples of when you should call PHLP for help:

    • Your Medical Assistance (Medicaid) application was denied, or you haven't heard anything about your application;
    • Your Medicaid coverage was stopped after your annual renewal (whether or not you received a notice in writing);
    • Medicaid denies services you need like shift nursing, Personal Assistance Services, behavioral health, prescription drugs, medical equipment, dental care, and more;

    • You are struggling to afford health care costs, such as Medicare prescription co-pays or the monthly Medicare Part B premium; or

    • Your are having another problem with Medicaid or any other publicly-funded health care programs. 

  • We provide free legal services to individuals from all 67 Pennsylvania counties who are seeking help getting or maintaining Medicaid coverage and/or services.  There is no income limit to qualify for our services.  

  • We try to answer intake calls live, but you may be asked to leave a confidential voicemail message. Our intake paralegal will call you back within 1-2 business days to gather preliminary information about you and the reason for your call.  

    All calls are strictly confidential. Your information will not be shared with anyone outside of PHLP unless you give us express permission and there is a legal reason for doing so.

  • Yes!  We use Language Line interpreter services for non-English speaking callers. Helpline callers should leave a message in their preferred language and we will return the call with an interpreter on the line. 

  • When you call, it is helpful to have any relevant notices, letters, or other paperwork on hand. Our intake paralegal may ask you for information from these documents.  

    Have a pen and paper ready to take notes about any information, e.g. important phone numbers or instructions for next steps, that the intake paralegal gives you during the call.

    During the call, prepare to answer questions about:

    • Yourself and any family members that live with you;
    • Demographic information;
    • Your health conditions, if any;
    • Whether you have health insurance and what kind;
    • The type of issue or legal problem you are having;
    • Any notices or letters you have received related to the reason for your call, such as a letter denying your Medicaid application or a denial of requested health care services;
    • Whether you have any appeals pending (i.e. did you already file an appeal or take any other action in response to a denial or termination notice?);
    • Any scheduled grievance or hearing date(s)
  • If we determine that your issue is one we can probably help with, our intake paralegal will send your case to a PHLP casehandler; either a laywer or paralegal.  The casehandler will review the intake notes and contact you as soon as possible to discuss your case in more detail, provide advice, and/or discuss further assistance we may be able to offer, such as representation at a hearing if appropriate.

    In some cases, we may ask you to fax, e-mail, or mail us certain paperwork to be reviewed by your casehandler. During the initial intake call, our intake paralegal will tell you what paperwork you should send and where/how to send it.

  • The level of help PHLP can offer you will depend on several factors, including the nature of your issue and our capacity. Here are some examples of how we may help:

    • Tell you whether you qualify for Medical Assistance (MA), Home & Community Based Waiver programs,  the Medicare Savings Program, or extra help with Medicare prescription costs and how to apply;
    • Explain your appeal rights if your MA application is denied or your coverage terminated; or if MA denies a requested service;
    • Explain how MA works with other health insurance like Medicare or private, employer-based insurance;
    • Help you navigate your MA coverage, access the services you need, and explain your rights and choices as a recipient of MA;
    • Make phone calls to the county and/or your MA plan with you or on your behalf;
    • Provide advice or represent you in a Grievance and/or Fair Hearing if your MA or Long-Term Services and Supports (LTSS) services are denied.
  • Below are some examples of cases we do not accept:

    • Private health insurance matters;
    • Special education or IEP issues;
    • Discrimination or accommodation matters;
    • Involuntary mental health commitments;
    • Enrolling in Medicare coverage or Medicare Advantage plans;
    • Applications or denials for Social Security Disability (SSD) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI);
    • Medical malpractice;
    • Criminal matters.

     

    If we determine we cannot help with your case or specific issue, we will do our best to provide you with appropriate referrals. Below are some of the most common referrals we suggest: