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On Lawyer & Legal » Insurance Law

6,092 words with 9 Comments; publish: Wed, 16 Feb 2005 10:31:00 GMT; (80093.99, « »)

The state is: The state is: Florida

Please help I just found out I was taken off my husbands company health insurance. I was never notified it's been a month and a half and I just found out at the doctors office yesterday I had no insurance. We are currently going through a divorce, nothing is finalized. We are living seperately as well.

I called the insurance company ,they referred me to human resources at his company. Human resources said because he cancelled it during open enrollment period not because of an event-divorce, that I am not eligible for cobra. I was never sent any notification of cancellation. Human resources said if the insurance company sent out something saying I wasn't covered it was sent to his address. The insurance company says nothing was sent out because I was not cancelled because of divorce which would prompt a cobra letter. Please help do I have any rights here?

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    • Ablessin, some plans are willing to accept a legal separation as a qualifying event. But believe me, I have been doing this for a great many years and I know what I'm talking about.
      #1; Thu, 10 Mar 2005 17:15:00 GMT
    • I am not sure if the above is correct. He could have had the decency to inform you he was cancelling you on the plan as a covered dependent. Probably you were terminated January 1st.

      There is nothing that states he had to keep you on, unless it was specifically declared in your decree. When my ex-husband and I split, I carried him until the first of the following month, so that gave him time to get the coverage thru his employer.....

      I cancelled him on October first, so it was not in open enrollment. I think I just told my HR that we split, I may have had to show them our legal separation papers. The separation may have been the qualifying event that allowed the cancellation mid-year.

      Best of luck, but I suggest obtaining your own coverage ASAP

      #2; Thu, 10 Mar 2005 13:50:00 GMT
    • I wish I could give you a different answer. But the fact of the matter is, neither your husband nor his employer acted unlawfully.

      HR is correct that COBRA is not triggered by his removing you at open enrollment. Nor does anything in the law require him to keep you on the insurance until the divorce is final (barring a court order that says otherwise).

      It's a shame that he did this and it's a worse shame that he didn't have the guts to tell you he was doing it, but no laws have been broken.

      #3; Wed, 16 Feb 2005 15:55:00 GMT
    • cbg is correct (of course) but if you have an attorney, you should discuss the sitaution with him. While no benefit or employment laws were violated, a family court judge may be none to pleased to hear your husband surreptitiously cancelled your health insurance and never told you.
      #4; Wed, 16 Feb 2005 16:02:00 GMT
    • What a rotten thing to do! Im pretty good with insurance and youve left me scratching my head as to what to do?

      Of course notify your attorney. But here are some thoughts

      Beings you are eligible for the insurance through your husbands employer it might be that you can be placed on the insurance at anytime. For example what happens if a couple has a new baby or adopts a child? You wouldnt wait for open enrollment to put the dependent on the policy. Id contact human resources at your husbands employer or the insurance company themselves. You may have to agree to pay for the coverage if your attorney cannot force your husband to pay but at least you will have coverage.

      #5; Wed, 16 Feb 2005 20:12:00 GMT
    • Pennylady, a birth or an adoption is considered a "qualifying event" and provides a 30 day window to add the child. Marriage is the same; so is divorce. I have been administering employer-sponsored group insurance for 25 years and the idea that she can just come back onto the employer's plan any time she likes is not going to fly. There are very specific laws - not just company regulations, LAWS - about when an employee or dependent can be added to or subtracted from the plan and she does NOT have that right. Talking to HR isn't going to do any good; they can't just add her back to the plan no matter how much they might like to.
      #6; Thu, 17 Feb 2005 07:24:00 GMT
    • Latest experience I had with this, was son was divorced last year, his wife carried health ins. According to her lawyer, she could not legally remove him off her insurance until divorce was final, and she had to submit a copy of decree to her employer. This is in GA
      #7; Tue, 22 Feb 2005 08:17:00 GMT
    • NOTHING in the law prevents an employee from removing a dependent from the insurance during open enrollment, regardless of whether the divorce is final or not. I agree that when open enrollment is NOT in force, the divorce has to be final before a dependent can legally be removed from the plan. But unless there is a court order specifically blocking it, there are NO circumstances in which an employee is legally prohibited from either adding or subtracting a dependent during open enrollment.
      #8; Tue, 22 Feb 2005 11:09:00 GMT
    • undefined*I'm in Kentucky*

      My husband and I have been separated a year. I have been unable to work (disabled w/ FBSS - 3+ surgeries & I have a morphine pump) for almost 2 years. He quit his job, then he filed for a divorce without letting me know and asked for joint custody. I filed a counterclaim for sole custody (he's been in a mental hospital on 2 occassions for 2+weeks at a time in the past year), he is threatening to cancel my insurance. He said he sent in COBRA payment for March.

      I called the insurance co. (United Healthcare), and they said that he can cancel my daughter & I without my knowledge, and he could even call and change coverage for March (he could have payments he sent for family coverage changed to individual and have balance applied to future payments). They said I would not be able to pay the premiums myself to stay covered, and I have no rights to COBRA.

      With my health, (I'm waiting for a Soc. Sec. Disability Hearing / Medicare) I'm afraid I won't be able to find health coverage.

      He has a job and had said benefits would start May 1st. Can a judge order him to insure me and my daughter? If I have an atty draw up a Motion to compel him to cover me, Is that something that a judge usually just signs, or is that going to be drawn out? HELP!

      #9; Mon, 14 Mar 2005 23:28:00 GMT