Employee Benefits

Clarifying the Confusion on Dependent Care Laws

health care reform

Health care for dependents has been a key focus in discussions on health care reform, officially called the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), which was signed into law in March 2010. While PPACA is scheduled for implementation in 2013 and 2014, some elements already have been introduced, such as the extension of insurance benefits for dependents.

Currently 37 states have extended the age that dependents can remain on their parents’ health insurance plan, while 13 others have chosen not to adopt the policy at this time. Unfortunately, there are considerable differences among state laws in terms of eligibility and requirements for dependent care, which necessitates that employers with multiple-site locations, insurance carriers and producers continually research the directives to ensure correct regulations are followed.

Summary of State Laws for Dependents
The National Conference of State Legislatures site has some excellent information on dependent care benefits. As you scroll through the site, you will find a table summarizing the age laws established by each state.

Overview of Health Care Reform
The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation also has prepared a helpful overview of health care reform and dependent care provisions established through the PPACA.

Confused? Partner with a Knowledgeable Carrier
As new mandates for health care reform are introduced throughout 2012, the information and implications may be confusing. To keep current on new regulations, partner with a trusted and knowledgeable insurance carrier and sales representative who can help you understand the impact on your employee benefit plans and develop appropriate solutions.

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