If you are going through a divorce and currently get your health insurance through your soon to be ex-spouse, you probably have a lot of unanswered questions regarding health insurance and whether you may continue to be covered under your former spouse’s employer sponsored group health benefits.
Under federal COBRA law, your spouse’s employer may need to continue providing you with health benefits. Further, Illinois state has a law that is formally known as Spousal Continuation Coverage, but is sometimes referred to as mini-COBRA. According to the Illinois Department of Insurance, Illinois’ law provides protections similar to that of the federal law, but may apply to more employers than the federal law does. For example, federal COBRA applies only to employers that have a certain number of employees, while Illinois’ spousal continuation law applies to all employers that offer fully insured group and accident health plans. However, this law does not apply to employers who are self-insured.
You, as the divorced spouse, and the children who are dependent on the insured spouse are eligible to continue their health insurance under this plan. You must act quickly though, because you have only a limited amount of time to take advantage of these benefits. A knowledgeable family law attorney can help you understand the laws and ensure that you meet the deadlines- it is important to contact a family lawyer as soon as possible. Although your ex-spouse’s employer should notify you of your rights under these laws, the employer is not always aware of the divorce or dissolution of marriage, and may not put you on notice of your rights.
If you are going through a divorce and have questions regarding your rights, you should contact a top Illinois divorce and family law attorney who can provide you with the answers you seek.