Employers Must Send Notice of Expanded Health Insurance Coverage For Adult Children

January 1, 2011

The new healthcare law now requires health insurance plans to cover employees’ children until the age of 26. This requirement applies to all health insurance plans renewing on or after September 23, 2010. If your health insurance plan renewed on January 1, 2011, this includes you. Eligible children of employees are enrolled retroactively to the first day of plan coverage..

The U.S. Department of Labor has issued sample language for employers to use to give notice to their employees of the expanded coverage. The notice can come from either the employer or the insurer and must be sent by the first date of the new plan. The sample notice language is as follows:

Individuals whose coverage ended, or who were denied coverage (or were not eligible for coverage), because the availability of dependent coverage of children ended before attainment of age 26 are eligible to enroll in [Insert name of group health plan or health insurance coverage]. Individuals may request enrollment for such children for 30 days from the date of notice. Enrollment will be effective retroactively to [insert date that is the first day of the first plan year beginning on or after September 23, 2010.] For more information contact the [insert plan administrator or issuer] at [insert contact information].