Can my ex drop me from his health coverage?

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My husband and I are legally separated and he is planning on dropping me from his health insurance coverage. Can he do that? Do I now have to buy health insurance on my own?”

Asked July 19, 2015

1 Answer


Insurance laws protect you against suddenly losing your health insurance coverage for several reasons, including termination from a job or separation from a spouse. If those events happen, you are entitled to continue your current health plan for up to 18 months under the Comprehensive Omnibus Reconciliation Act, or COBRA.

Unless your spouse is ordered to do so by the court, they do not have to continue to furnish insurance for you. This means that even if you decide to use COBRA, you will have to pay the full premiums yourself, including any portion that was previously paid by your spouse or the employer. In addition, COBRA has processing fees that have to be paid when you first choose to use it. The benefit of COBRA is that it gives you a period of time after the separation to get settled and get your own life back on track. COBRA will cost more than buying a health plan of your own, but it will prevent you from suddenly going without coverage.

It will be more affordable to find your own health insurance plan. If you do not have access to an employer-sponsored plan, you may be able to get coverage through some club or organization you belong to. With the passage of the Affordable Care Act, you also have the option of applying for health insurance through your state health insurance exchange. If you live in a state which does not have an exchange, there is a federal exchange available at the healthcare.gov website.

You can also apply for a new health insurance plan from this website. By filling out a single form, you will receive a free online health insurance quote from a leading insurance provider. Since this website is an insurance brokerage, they do not represent a single company, but offer several comparable choices from different insurance companies to help you get the best policy for your insurance dollar.

Answered July 21, 2015 by Anonymous

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