Connecticut Law on Medical Coverage After a Divorce

By Heather Frances J.D.

In Connecticut, medical coverage ends for a spouse who is covered under the other spouse’s plan once the divorce is final. State laws vary concerning medical insurance for an ex-spouse after divorce. However, Connecticut law does not require insurance companies to continue health insurance eligibility for ex-spouses after a divorce from a covered spouse.

In Connecticut, medical coverage ends for a spouse who is covered under the other spouse’s plan once the divorce is final. State laws vary concerning medical insurance for an ex-spouse after divorce. However, Connecticut law does not require insurance companies to continue health insurance eligibility for ex-spouses after a divorce from a covered spouse.

Connecticut Laws

In Connecticut, medical coverage ends at divorce for a spouse who was covered under her ex-spouse’s insurance plan. In 2012, Connecticut House Bill 5535 attempted to change this by requiring continued eligibility for ex-spouses who were covered by a spouse’s group plan prior to divorce. Some other states currently have laws like this, but it did not pass through the Connecticut legislature.

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COBRA

Federal law, through the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1985, commonly referred to as COBRA, provides a way for spouses to continue health insurance coverage after divorce. Under this law, an ex-spouse can continue benefits for up to three years following divorce -- but at the premium’s full employer cost. For example, if your ex-spouse receives insurance for free through his employer but an individual plan costs the employer $500, your cost under COBRA is $500 even though you used to get coverage for free when you were married.

Settlement Arrangements

A Connecticut marital settlement agreement or divorce decree can order that one spouse maintain an individual insurance plan for the other spouse, either through a COBRA plan or otherwise, or it can order a spouse to contribute a certain amount of money toward the other spouse’s plan payments. While this doesn’t keep the losing spouse on her ex-spouse’s plan, it does help defray the costs of purchasing other insurance. Additionally, the court can consider the cost of medical insurance, along with other expenses, when determining alimony.

Coverage for Children

Divorce typically does not cause a couple’s children to lose health insurance eligibility because they can still be covered through a parent’s group coverage just as before. As part of a divorce or child support order, a Connecticut court determines who is responsible for paying the children’s health insurance and maintaining coverage. If the parent with health coverage loses his job, the order can be adjusted to provide an alternate arrangement.

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Ohio Health Insurance to a Spouse Post-Divorce

References

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Divorce Laws Regarding Insurance in Wisconsin

For some couples, insurance coverage is a significant factor in their divorce, because terminating a marriage often means terminating insurance coverage. Most the estimated 65,000 American women who lose health insurance each year due to divorce previously had been covered under their husbands’ health insurance plans, according to a University of Michigan study. Wisconsin courts, however, have limited power to help uninsured spouses maintain coverage after divorce.

Health Insurance Laws During Divorce in Texas

Families often obtain health insurance through one spouse’s employer-sponsored group plan; however, you likely will lose your eligibility for your spouse’s plan when your divorce becomes final. Texas judges typically issue temporary orders that keep the uninsured spouse on the insured spouse’s plan while the divorce is pending. After the divorce becomes final, Texas law does not force insurance companies to continue coverage for the uninsured ex-spouse, although federal law does provide an option.

New York State Health Insurance Rules When Getting a Divorce

New York does not require health insurers to provide health insurance for divorced spouses, so one spouse may lose health insurance when she divorces if she was covered by her husband’s plan. New York law even requires divorcing spouses to acknowledge they are aware they will no longer be allowed to receive health care coverage under a former spouse’s insurance plan once the divorce is final.

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