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Decades Of Litigation Experience

HEALTH INSURANCE AFTER DIVORCE

by | Oct 25, 2021 | Firm News |

By Hope Tuber

In most cases one spouse provides health insurance for the entire family. However, now that you’re getting divorced, one of the major issues concerns health insurance after you are divorced. If you have children, this issue is easy as there will not be any interruption and they will continue to have coverage. The real issue is for the spouse who was not providing health insurance.

First, you are entitled to stay on your spouse’s health insurance until the judgement of divorce is signed. This can be months after your matter is finally settled whether it is through a settlement or after a trial. This means that you have some time to investigate obtaining a new plan. However, please do not forget that your insurance will no longer be available once the Judgment of Divorce is signed—not when you receive it. Most people do not realize this and continue submitting health insurance claims under a policy that is no longer effective. The result is you will be charged with the entire expense as if you did not have health insurance—because in reality you did not have it. Second, you may be entitled to cobra insurance through your spouse’s policy after the divorce is finalized. Ensure there is a provision for this in any agreement you enter into. Third, you may ask the court to issue an order directing your spouse’s insurance policy to allow you to stay on the policy. If this happens, you will probably have to assist in the cost of said coverage however it may be worth it if you are unable to obtain a policy relatively quickly.

If none of these options are possible, speak to your spouse and see if it is agreeable to hold off on the Judgement of Divorce and live by your separation agreement. As this will resolve all aspects of your divorce, the filing of the final package seeking your Judgment of Divorce is nothing to be negotiated with as all the terms are already in your Stipulation. Clearly the drawback is that you are legally married and thus, you are unable to get remarried until the divorce is finalized.

Take your time and think about all your options. If possible, discuss them with your soon to be ex-spouse and see how you both can benefit from ensuring all parties have access to a health insurance policy.