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Dependent Coverage Mandate FAQs

Q. How long can my child be covered under my policy?

A. If your policy provides coverage for dependent children, your policy must cover your child until he or she turns 26. This is true regardless of your child’s financial independence, residency with you or any other person, student status, or employment. If your coverage is through a group health plan that began before January 1, 2014 and qualifies as a grandfathered health plan, your plan may exclude coverage for your adult child who is not 26 if that child is eligible to enroll in a different group health plan.

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Q. When can I add my adult child to my policy?

A. You may add an adult child when your policy is renewed. If you coverage is through your employer, please contact your employer for more information on how to add a dependent at renewal time.

If your coverage is through an individual policy (a policy not offered through an employer), Dean Health Plan will notify you of this option during the renewal process – approximately 30-45 days prior to the renewal date.

You may also be able to add your child outside of the renewal date if there is a qualifying event.

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Q. How can I add my adult child to my policy?

  • If coverage is through your employer, and your eligible adult child is not currently insured on the policy, you should submit an application to your employer prior to the renewal date to add your adult child. Coverage for your child will be effective upon your renewal date as long as it’s received by Dean Health Plan within 30 days of the effective date. Example: If your group renews January 1st, the application must be submitted to Dean Health Plan prior to January 31, to be considered timely. Your employer should be able to help you with the specifics your company’s application process.
  • If coverage is through an individual policy, you’ll need to submit an application directly to Dean Health Plan to add your dependent. Coverage for your child will be effective upon your renewal date as long as it’s received by us within 30 days of the effective date. If your premium rate is affected, we’ll let you know with the next billing statement.

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Q. If my dependent turns 26 before my renewal, will you terminate him or her?

A. If your coverage is through your employer, your adult dependent will lose coverage when your plan is renewed. For example, if your group renews on March 1, 2013, your 26-year-old dependent will be covered through February 28, 2014.

If your coverage is through an individual policy, your adult dependent will at least be covered through the end of day in which they turn 26. If you purchased your individual coverage through healthcare.gov, your adult dependent may be covered through December 31 of the year in which he or she turns 26 because healthcare.gov does not currently have the functionality to terminate dependents mid-year. 

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Q. Do I have to include my adult child on my policy?

A. No. The new mandates require insurance companies to extend dependent coverage to include adult children, but parents have the choice of whether or not they wish to cover their adult children.

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Q. My adult child is on COBRA continuation coverage. Can I cover him or her on my insurance?

A. Yes, as long as your adult child meets the eligibility requirements.

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Q. Does this change affect me if I have a disabled adult child?

A. Yes. This means that we do not need to confirm the disabled status of your child until he or she turns age 26.

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Q. Can my dependent be covered on my policy after returning from active duty in the military?

A. If your child was under age 27 and a full-time student at an institution of higher education when he or she was called to federal active duty, he or she may be covered on your policy after returning for as long as he or she is a full-time student.

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Q. If my dependent gets married, can he or she stay on my policy?

A. Yes.

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Q. Why didn’t I receive a dependent verification form this year?

A. Since the verification process was largely based on validating full-time student status and support from parents, it is no longer needed.

We may have to confirm full-time student status in limited cases where the military service provision may apply but we will do that on a case by case basis.

Note: State and local government (Employee Trust Funds program) employees are required to provide additional student verification. For more information, please see the Department of Employee Trust Funds website. Federal employees should also refer to their benefit materials for information on dependent coverage guidelines.

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Q. Can the spouse of a married adult dependent be covered on this plan as well?

A. No, only the adult dependent can be covered under their parents’ plan.

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