Residency Not Determined by Undocumented Status

The Idaho Supreme Court ruled today that an undocumented immigrant who was injured in Ada County was entitled to medical assistance from that county regardless of his immigration status, stating that “the concept of residency does not distinguish between citizens and those who have entered this country illegally.”

The ruling reversed a board opinion and resembles the approach ten states have already taken to giving instate-tuition to undocumented students. Namely, residency and citizenship are two separate matters and defined differently.

A resident of Idaho as defined as “a person with a home, house, place of abode, place of habitation, dwelling or place where he or she actually lived for a consecutive period of thirty (30) days or more within the state of Idaho. A resident does not include a person who comes into this state for temporary purposes, including, but not limited to, education, vacation, or seasonal labor…”

Following that definition, most undocumented immigrants with the exception of seasonal migrant workers, are deemed residents by the county or state in which they reside. Their immigration status has no bearing on their residency.

The Supreme Court Opinion is here

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