Posts Tagged - ‘young adult health insurance’

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Ohio Health Insurance For Young Adults Goes Past Nation

Friday, June 11th, 2010

As most people know, the national healthcare reform law requires health insurers to cover young adult dependents of policyholders.

While the federal law is effective until age 26, recent Ohio health insurance legislation goes a step further. In that state, all regulated health plans are required to extend that coverage until he or she turns 28!

Large corporations that self-insure (instead of buying coverage) are exempt, although activists are asking them to comply regardless.

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Adult Children On Health Insurance Plans? Not So Fast

Tuesday, June 1st, 2010

Image: gcoldironjr2003 under CC 3.0

Although Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius has asked health insurance companies to extend coverage to adult children until the age of 26–who would otherwise age out of their parents’ plans or become ineligible upon college graduation–immediately, they aren’t legally mandated to do so until the first plan year beginning after September 23rd.

Actually, most health insurers have agreed to do so. It’s the employers who are holding out until the last minute. Most corporate health insurance plans don’t renew until January 1st. That leaves newly minted university graduates in the lurch for several months.

Even those companies who are willing to retain existing coverage won’t let young adults whose coverage previously lapsed re-enroll until next year.

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Sebelius Urges Employers to Implement Group Health Insurance Earlier

Friday, May 28th, 2010

Image: US Mission Geneva under CC 3.0

The deadline for large group health insurance plans to expand coverage to the adult children of employees until the age of 26 is September 23rd. However, the actual date depends on when the new plan year begins, which can be as late as January 1st of next year for many companies.

Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius is encouraging employers to enact this element of healthcare reform earlier than required. Doing so will be especially helpful to recent college graduates, who would otherwise be uninsured.

Will businesses comply? On the one hand, the demographic in question is generally healthy, so total costs shouldn’t rise all that much. On the other hand, premiums may increase. One study found that 16% are planning to expand their health benefits to this group.

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Military Families Can’t Put Adult Children On Health Insurance

Wednesday, May 26th, 2010

Image: The U.S. Army under CC 3.0

The good news for families in the military who are insured through Tricare: their health insurance has remained unchanged post-reform. The bad news: they can’t participate in one of the highly-publicized benefits of it.

Unlike civilians with normal health insurance plans, families with Tricare won’t be able to keep their adult, non-dependent children on their coverage until the age of 26.

Defense funding authorization bills currently pending in the House of Representatives and the Senate seeks to remedy this disparity.

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Will Your Large Employer Extend Group Health Insurance?

Wednesday, May 5th, 2010

Image: josh.liba under CC 3.0

Many large private-sector employers self-insure. That means that instead of buying group health insurance directly from providers, they let insurers administer their health benefits, while paying the claims themselves.

As a result, they are not necessarily following the providers who have decided to extend coverage to adult dependents until the age of 27; the healthcare reform law doesn’t force them to until the start of their next plan year.

Experts have not heard of any major corporations making changes to their health insurance plan‘s eligibility yet. Rather, they are trying to decide whether or not to charge additional fees to young adults joining or rejoining their parent’s coverage.

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Even Married Adult Children Can Use Parent’s Health Insurance!

Monday, April 26th, 2010

Image: Ian Sane under CC 3.0

One of the immediate benefits of healthcare reform is that adult children can extend their coverage on a parent’s health insurance plan as a dependent for a longer period of time–until age 26.

In most cases, that is no longer necessary once they get married; the otherwise uninsured young adult would get on their spouse’s coverage. However, the recession has put a wrinkle in that plan: their new husband or wife may be in similar circumstances. Whether he or she is unemployed, underemployed, or working for a company that does not offer health benefits, they may be unable to afford family health insurance at the moment. They may even have a pre-existing condition that prevents them from finding coverage altogether.

You can thank the package of reconciliation fixes for including this exception; the initial Senate bill that passed didn’t. In addition, you can’t stay on a parent’s plan if your employer begins offering health insurance coverage.

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Student Health Insurance Investigation Finds Problems

Friday, April 9th, 2010

Image: m00by under CC 3.0

After an investigation, New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo believes that many providers of student health insurance are offering inferior coverage for higher rates. In effect, they receive far more in premiums than they pay out in claims.

College students have been a boon to health insurance companies: the typical student is their perfect customer–the young, healthy adult with no pre-existing conditions. Their policies are profitable, and help pay for other policyholders’ claims. Over half of America’s universities require their students to have health coverage for safety reasons, but some are able to negotiate better deals from insurers than others.

The issue is that there aren’t many of those sicker patients in the student pools, so the more expensive premiums are largely moot. Since students are looking for affordable health insurance, many colleges keep costs down by providing very little in benefits (despite state regulations meant to prevent that). Many plans don’t cover injuries sustained while intoxicated, an issue for many in this environment.

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Which Adult Children Are Eligible For Their Parents’ Health Insurance?

Monday, April 5th, 2010

(Image: TheeErin under CC 3.0)

One of the immediate benefits of healthcare reform is that young adults up to the age of 26 will be able to remain on their parents’ health insurance plans. Members of Generation Y are struggling to find jobs, and many of the jobs now available do not offer health benefits. In six months, the policy should be in full effect.

How do you know if you or your child is eligible?

  • An adult child must remain as a dependent, but they don’t necessarily have to live in their parents’ home. Many believe it will cover young adults living on their own, in addition to those in college dorms.
  • Somewhat counter-intuitively, married adult children within the age range are eligible to keep the health insurance of either parent. However, their spouses and any children are not.
  • The details are still fuzzy. The Department of Health and Human Services will probably have a different definition of “dependent” than the Internal Revenue Service. According to the IRS, anyone earning more than a nominal income of a few thousand dollars must file their own tax return.
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Individual Health Insurance Rates To Increase For Young Adults?

Tuesday, March 30th, 2010

(Image: r.f.m. II under CC 3.0)

An Associated Press analysis has found that healthcare reform may result in young adults in their 20s and early 30s paying more for their health insurance plans. Starting in 2014, health insurers will no longer be allowed to deny coverage to people with pre-existing conditions, or use age rating practices to charge older consumers rates more than three times higher than those for younger ones. That cost will inadvertently end up passed onto younger policyholders, who use fewer healthcare services and are therefore more profitable.

How much will it cost them? The average individual health insurance premium for this demographic will rise by about $42; a 17% increase. Young men will be harder hit, since their rates tend to be less expensive than women of the same age.

Granted, this estimate does not take into account tax credits and subsidies to pay for insurance, which many people under 35 may be eligible for.

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One in Four Young Adults Without Student Health Insurance

Wednesday, February 24th, 2010

(Image: ralphbijker under CC 2.0)

A recent survey from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control has found that nearly one in four young adults and students lack affordable health insurance. That’s probably the reason why one-fourth of American adults ages 18-24 haven’t seen a doctor in more than one year!

Putting off preventative care can lead to major health problems and higher costs in the long run. Young adults in college can buy student health insurance that covers primary care doctor visits; in fact, many universities require their students to be insured. Even if yours doesn’t, it’s still a good investment in your health care. Meanwhile, others can buy individual health insurance.

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