YOU ASK:

Do you get dropped from your parents insurance the day you graduate from college or is there a grace period to allow you to get insurance on your own?

WE ANSWER:

Graduating from college does not mean that you won't have insurance coverage.

With the health care reform bill, you will still be covered under your parents' health insurance for as long as you are 26 years old or below regardless of whether you graduated from college, are still studying or are currently working. This is regardless of whether they are married.

However, once you reach your 27th birthday, you will be automatically dropped from your parents' insurance coverage as you are no longer eligible for coverage.

The only time that you will be dropped out of your parents' health insurance before you turn 27 is when you become employed and obtain health insurance through your employer.

This new regulation will be offered on all new health insurance plans starting September 2010. This includes not just employer-sponsored plans but individual plans as well. If you already have a plan, then this regulation will apply when you renew the plan.

Now, if you are over 27 years of age, you can also look into the possibility of whether your existing health insurance is portable when you graduate from college. Based on the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act or HIPAA, it is possible that you can continue coverage with another provider, for as long as you have been covered by the group health plan for at least a year and that the coverage had no interruptions lasting for over 60 days. With this, you can still get coverage even if you have a pre-existing condition.

If this is not possible, you can also look into getting insurance from your employer or if you are self-employed or currently out of a job, then you can look into the individual health insurance market.

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