Health insurance after divorce

Last week, US News reported on a University of Michigan study that found tens of thousands of women each year lose their private insurance after divorce

View the report here.

The study results come as no surprise to most family law attorneys. Making sure that every family member (husband, wife, minor children and college-aged children) has adequate health insurance is a significant issue for all divorcing couples. If a client has been on his or her spouse’s insurance plan, then s/he must navigate through the rights and options to health insurance post divorce. Those rights and options are limited in terms of cost and length of coverage by both federal and state laws. Private health insurance for individuals can be extremely expensive and sometimes not obtainable especially if the individual has had a pre-existing condition. In those cases where affordable health insurance is not possible, divorcing couples sometimes agree to delay the date of their divorce judgment (to extend health insurance benefits) and sometimes they pursue options that are available other than divorce (i.e. post-nuptial agreements rather than divorce).