Kansas lawmakers OK tougher Medicaid fraud law

Derek Schmidt (AP Photo/Orlin Wagner)
Derek Schmidt (AP Photo/Orlin Wagner)

TOPEKA, Kansas (AP) – Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt is praising legislators for unanimously approving a measure to increase penalties for defrauding the state’s Medicaid program.

Schmidt said Monday the bill approved over the weekend also would make it easier to fine people who file false Medicaid claims. The Medicaid program is funded jointly by states and the federal government and provides health coverage for the needy and disabled.

Kansas law now carries a presumed sentence of two years’ probation for a first-time offender convicted of defrauding Medicaid of $25,000 or more.

Under the bill, a person defrauding Medicaid of between $100,000 and $250,000 would face nearly three years in prison. Someone defrauding the program of $250,000 or more would face almost five years in prison.

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