Illinois’s new Young Adult Dependent Coverage Law went into effect June 1, making it possible for dependent young adults up to age 26–and age 30 for armed forces veterans–to be included on a parent’s health insurance plan for at least a few months.
“Young adults, working through college or even with steady employment, often lack access to health insurance,” said Michael T. McRaith, director of the Illinois Department of Insurance. “This coverage option offers families a fair alternative, ultimately improving the long-term health and financial security of our young adults.”
Under the new law, health insurance policies and health maintenance organization contracts that offer dependent coverage must include unmarried young adults in the specified age groups to join the plan, even if not enrolled in an educational institution.
All policies must offer an initial 90-day enrollment period to eligible dependents. New policies issued after June 1, must provide the initial 90-day enrollment period immediately upon issuance or delivery. For existing policies, the initial enrollment period will vary depending on the date the policy is issued, amended or renewed.
The law also specifies that dependents added to group policies during the initial 90-day enrollment, annual enrollment, or special enrollment periods may not be declined due to health status.
Parents seeking to purchase an individual policy must first meet the insurance company’s underwriting guidelines to receive an offer of coverage. If the individual policy provides dependent coverage, eligible dependents must be offered coverage regardless of health status, the law states.