Navigation Links
Health Insurance Options for Domestic Partnerships
Date:7/9/2009

KANSAS CITY, Mo., July 9 /PRNewswire/ -- Legalized marriage for same-sex couples continues to be a headline issue in states like New York, California and New Hampshire. However, in most states, domestic partnerships have little or no legal recognition. Domestic partners in all states need to get smart about their health care insurance to make sure they are properly covered. The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) provides these tips to help same-sex couples recognize their options.

  1. Employer-provided benefits are on the rise. Thirty-four percent of large employers offer benefits to domestic partners, a 180 percent jump from just 12 percent in 2000(1). Before enrolling, check directly with your health insurer or human resources department to ensure your partner will be covered, and how your employer's plan verifies eligibility for your partner (usually through formal documentation or evidence of joint bank accounts or property ownership or lease).
  2. Add your partner to an individual policy. If you have an individual policy, check with your insurer to add a domestic partner to it as a family member. State requirements on this may vary.
  3. Establish coverage for children. If you and your domestic partner have dependent children, they could be eligible for health care coverage as dependents. You may need to provide your employer or insurance company with legal documentation as proof of their dependency. In states that do not recognize both of you as parents, you may need to obtain additional documentation from a local court. Ask your legal advisor for details.
  4. Learn tax implications. Typically, health benefits provided to domestic partners through employers aren't exempt from federal tax liability, and state tax exemptions vary. The benefits could be recognized as income, and pre-tax dollars from flexible spending accounts or health savings accounts cannot be used to cover domestic partner benefits. The recipient may be exempt from these taxes if supported by his or her partner. To determine if you meet the criteria, see page 33 of IRS Publication 17 or contact your state insurance department. Go to www.naic.org/state_web_map.htm for a link to your state insurance department's Web site.
  5. Continue coverage with COBRA. If your domestic partnership dissolves and you receive health benefits from your partner's employer-sponsored group health plan, you may be entitled to continue your coverage under state and local COBRA-like laws for up to 18 months after you exit the plan. Check with your state insurance department for further information on mini-COBRA laws in your state.
  6. Establish health care power of attorney. Domestic partners may want to consider creating a health care proxy or health care power of attorney document indicating you have designated your partner to make medical decisions for you if you are incapacitated and also to allow for hospital visitation. The document should be prepared by an attorney and kept in a safe, accessible place if you or your partner need it. You can also place it on file with your physician to make the doctor aware of your wishes. Ask your legal advisor for details.
  7. If your employer's plan does not provide domestic partner coverage, then ask about including it at renewal. Research and experience with domestic partner benefits shows that domestic partner coverage does not add significant additional costs to employer plans (estimated 1% to 3% maximum increase). Many insurers will only offer domestic partner benefits as part of a benefit package upon request of the employer. If your plan does not include domestic partner benefits, ask your benefits manager to consider adding the coverage when the plan renews.

More Information

If you have questions about your policy, you can seek the help of the NAIC or your state insurance commissioner. Visit www.InsureUonline.org to find answers to your questions or to contact your state insurance department.

About the NAIC

Formed in 1871, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) is a voluntary organization of the chief insurance regulatory officials of the 50 states, the District of Columbia and five U.S. territories. The NAIC has three offices: Executive Office, Washington, D.C.; Central Office, Kansas City, Mo.; and Securities Valuation Office, New York City. The NAIC serves the needs of consumers and the industry, with an overriding objective of supporting state insurance regulators as they protect consumers and maintain the financial stability of the insurance marketplace. For more consumer information, visit insureUonline.org.

(1) Mercer National Survey of Employer-Sponsored Health Plans (2008)

    CONTACT:
    Monica Charleston,
    312-233-1317
    monica.charleston@edelman.com


'/>"/>
SOURCE National Association of Insurance Commissioners
Copyright©2009 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Statement by Registered Dietitian and American Dietetic Association President Jessie M. Pavlinac on Health Reform and Conservation of Natural Resources
2. Go Healthy Announces Negotiations With Bottling Facilities
3. AMN Healthcare Services to Host 2009 Second Quarter Earnings Conference Call on Thursday, August 6, 2009
4. Scottsdale Healthcare Streamlines Contract Labor Process with Broadlane Workforce Management
5. Long-Term Care Financing Must Be Part of Health Care Reform
6. Health Physics Society 54th Annual Meeting
7. The next health tsunami: Noncommunicable diseases
8. Universal Health Services, Inc. Announces Daniel B. Silvers Appointed to Board of Directors
9. Statement About Agreement With White House and Senate Finance Committee on Health Reform
10. California Department of Public Health Reports Large Increase in Pet Euthanasia
11. While Health Clubs Say No to Canckles, Leading Podiatrists Say No to Toenail Fungus
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:12/7/2016)... ... December 07, 2016 , ... Augustine Insurance Agency, a ... and business owners in the greater Dallas metropolitan area, is announcing a charity ... Foundation. , Established in 2009 by active police professionals in the Dallas region, ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... ... ... A. Kevin Spann Insurance, a New York-based firm offering insurance and financial ... charity drive to raise funds that will benefit the Marine Corps League. , The ... FMF Corpsmen. Working closely with the MCL, the A. Kevin Spann team plans to ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... ... December 07, 2016 , ... The ... its fully redesigned website, which launched October 17, 2016, features comprehensive information regarding ... and easy-to-navigate layout. Visitors and patients can discover the latest clinical dermatology treatments ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... ... December 07, 2016 , ... ... Texas, is condemning "scam operations" carried out by unethical locksmith companies and is ... operations to a halt. According to Texas Premier Locksmith, these fraudulent locksmith services ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... December 07, 2016 , ... "ProBrand Flip ... and all media," said Christina Austin - CEO of Pixel Film Studios. , ProBrand ... easy to use drop zones. Editors can select from a variety of flip book ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:12/7/2016)... Corporate Whistleblower Center is urging a physician ... 866-714-6466 if they possess proof a pharmaceutical company is bribing doctors ... the innocent patients frequently being the victims, these types of schemes ... Medicare recipients or the elderly. Photo ... ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... , Dec. 7, 2016   Rx Savings Solutions ... and its Public Employees Insurance Agency (PEIA) to ... to their innovative healthcare software, ultimately saving money on their ... and provide its members with access to our software that ... more effective, affordable therapy can be found," says Michael ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... 2016  Varian Medical Systems (NYSE: VAR ... plans to separate its Imaging Components business.  The separation ... to Varian stockholders of common stock in Varex Imaging ... the Imaging Components business.  As part of the separation, ... end of January 2017, Varian will receive an approximate ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: