Per 1902(ff) of the Social Security Act, certain resources owned by Native American tribes are excluded for MO HealthNet.
Tribal lands may be owned by
- The tribe or
- A trust between the federal government and the tribe, for the benefit of the tribe and/or tribal members.
Individual members of a tribe cannot sell tribal lands owned by a tribe or trust but may be permitted to utilize tribal lands for personal gain. Members may access lands to harvest or extract natural resources such as oil, gas, timber, or fish. While an individual member may be given the right to harvest or extract resources, the member may not be allowed to sell this right to another individual.
Do not count as a resource any land, mineral, fishing, or timber rights for participants who cannot sell the land, mineral, fishing, or timber rights.
EXAMPLE: David, as a member of his tribe, has the right to log certain lands owned by the tribe. He cannot sell the land on which the timber is located and he is not permitted to sell his right to log it. The land and the timber rights are not a countable resource for David.
Products of an Excluded Resource
Sales of products extracted from a non-countable tribal resource are also excluded as income or as a resource in the same month the money is received. If any money remains the following month, it is a countable resource for the participant.
EXAMPLE: In May, David receives $7000 for the sale of some walnut logs he harvested from tribal lands. David uses the funds to buy new appliances for his home. In June, he still has $2000 from the sale of the timber. $2000 is a countable resource for David as of June 1.
Trust Funds for Members of Tribes
Tribes may have established trust funds for members. If the terms of the trust state that the member may receive funds from the trust, but the member may not access the money without a request to a trustee, the trust may not be a countable resource. Obtain a copy of the trust and any other available information regarding the trust. Using a Policy Clarification Request (IM-14) and established procedures, send the information for a policy determination.