Tags: Massachusetts | Immigrant Rights

Mass. Court Makes Key Ruling on Immigrant Benefits

Friday, 06 May 2011 04:30 PM

 

BOSTON (AP) — Immigrant advocates are praising a decision by Massachusetts' highest court that they say could help restore full subsidized health care to legal immigrants in the state.

A 2009 legislative decision to deny coverage to legal immigrants was the first major rollback to Massachusetts' landmark 2006 health care law. The law was used in part as a blueprint for the national law signed by President Barack Obama.

A ruling Friday by the Supreme Judicial Court does not decide the case but answers key questions that will allow it to proceed.

The court ruled that protections against discrimination don't explicitly protect individuals based on their immigration status. But it said any attempt to deny benefits should be held to strict judicial scrutiny.

A class action lawsuit now heads back to one justice.

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