Most likely, you’ve done a fine job teaching your children to take care of themselves. But you’re right to worry about illness and injuries. Many entry-level jobs these days don’t include health insurance coverage, or the employee’s share of the cost prohibits them from enrolling in a plan. Most twenty-somethings enjoy relatively good health, and it’s easy to see why they might feel health insurance is an unnecessary expense. Yet, one injury or bad illness can cause your adult child to rack up thousands in medical bills. They may also face tax penalties for failing to maintain health insurance coverage.
Luckily, the Affordable Care Act established new rules regarding adult children and health insurance policies. You can actually keep your child on your health insurance until age 26, even if they are no longer considered your dependent or get married themselves. If you have younger children who are already covered on your health insurance policy, your adult child can probably even be added at no additional cost to you.
If you’re concerned about your adult child’s insurance coverage (or lack thereof), this is the time to start talking to them about it. Open Enrollment for health insurance plans begins on November 15. Over the next two months you and your child can compare the cost of their enrollment in an individual health insurance plan versus the cost of joining your plan. Remember that your child may be eligible for income tax credits to offset the cost of purchasing their own plan.
If your child has flown the nest, but you want to protect them from a fall, now is the time to weigh your options for health insurance. Talk to your licensed insurance broker about your options for adult children under age 26.