Many questions arise when couples divorce regarding benefits one may have taken for granted as a married couple, benefits such as health and life insurance which may discontinue following a divorce.
Can I stay on my husband or wife’s health insurance after divorce?
With the high cost of health insurance, employer offered health insurance is a highly sought after benefit for individuals and families. Health insurance when couples divorce, the non-employee spouse is no longer covered under their ex’s employer offered insurance. In other words, one cannot stay on their ex’s health insurance when the divorce is finalized, but if you have children, they can continue health insurance coverage. Who pays the premiums will be decided as part of your divorce.
Typically the non-employee spouse will qualify for cobra insurance, which provides coverage for 36 months following a qualifying event such as a divorce. Reach out to your ex-spouses HR department or our health insurance company for details regarding enrollment if you have not received information already. COBRA can be expensive, but may bridge the gap until you are able to secure health insurance of your own.
What about life insurance – can my ex-spouse remove me as the beneficiary when we have kids?
Your ex-spouse can change the beneficiary of his or her life insurance policy before the divorce action is underway and after a divorce is finalized. However, if your ex is ordered to pay child or spousal support, he or she may be required to maintain life insurance with you or the children as beneficiaries in the event of his or her untimely death to ensure these payments are fulfilled. Keep in mind, however, this is wholly dependent on your ex following through on premium payments and not making any changes to the policy without your knowledge. It may be worthwhile to take out your own life insurance policy on the higher earning spouse so you can control the payment of premiums and beneficiaries.
Contact an Experienced Divorce Lawyer for Answers
If you are considering divorce, it is important to work closely with an experienced family law attorney who can not only answer questions about your health and life insurance benefits after divorce but provide detailed information regarding issues you may have not even have considered to ensure the most favorable outcome in your divorce. Contact Lake county Illinois divorce attorney Ronald L. Bell & Associates for immediate assistance at 847-495-6000.