April 05, 2018

Here’s what newlyweds need to know about health insurance

Insurance Marriage

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Are you getting ready to say “I do?” Congratulations! As you prepare for the big day, be sure to make some time to sit down with your partner and determine how marriage is going to impact your health care coverage as a couple.

Getting married is considered a “qualifying life event.” In health insurance terms, it means you can enroll in a new health plan or make changes to your existing health plan outside of Open Enrollment Period. That includes adding your new loved one (or loved ones) to your current health plan.

So, if you were married in the last 60 days or are planning to say “I do” in the next few months, now may be a good time to see if making a change would help you save money or provide one of you with a health plan that better meets your, and your new spouse’s, needs.

If you are currently enrolled in a health insurance plan, gather together the pricing and statements of benefits and consider the following scenarios:

  1. You or your spouse cancels your health plan and joins the other’s health plan available through his/her employer. “Employee + spouse” is often less expensive than two standard “employee only” selections. You also may find this is the best option for you if one partner has a health plan that you both feel more comfortable being covered under.
  2. You and your spouse cancel your health plan and you both switch to a new health plan available through the other’s employer. It’s called a special life event for a reason — things change. If you now need more or less coverage, this is a good time to make that adjustment. Need help choosing the best health plan for you and your spouse? Check out this helpful insurance shopping guide and/or watch the health insurance basics video.
  3. You both cancel your health plans and move to a new insurance provider. Depending on the size of your employer, you may find it more affordable to purchase an individual and family plan through a health insurer like Independence Blue Cross, or to use the federal health insurance marketplace to purchase a health insurance plan.
  4. You do nothing. At the end of the day, perhaps your relationship status may have changed, but your health insurance needs haven’t. If that’s the case, stick with what you’ve got, knowing you did the due diligence to confirm it’s still the right health plan for you.

Want to learn more about a specific qualifying event for health insurance? Check out our guide to events and timelines.

Interested in learning about individual and family plans available through Independence Blue Cross? Compare our plans now.

This article was originally published on IBX Insights.


About Paula Sunshine

As SVP and Chief Marketing Executive at Independence Blue Cross, Paula Sunshine is accountable for the Individual Under-65 market segment. In this capacity, she is directly responsible for developing and executing all direct-to-consumer marketing and sales capabilities. In addition, Ms. Sunshine is accountable for insuring the delivery of market-competitive products and pricing as well as operational readiness for the Consumer market.