A federal judge has told the State Social Services Department it can no longer cut off health insurance coverage for children in low-income families without a warning letter and a chance for a hearing.

The judge’s order says the insurance coverage has to continue until a decision is made afater the hearing. The Department also must determine if the child is eligible for coverage in another Medicaid insurance program before stopping coverage.

The lawsuit was filed by a woman whose Medicaid coverage for her daughter was cut off after her bank did not make automatic premium payments.