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Political Issues This forum is for discussing the political aspects of divorce: reform to divorce laws, men's rights, women's rights, injustices in the divorce system, etc.

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Old 11-29-2008, 11:19 AM
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Default Spousal Health Benefits

Hi there
I am new to this site and looking for a little information.
I know someone going through a nasty separation who is at the mercy of his estranged wife in regards to his access to his children. He has recently had a change of health benefit providers at work and is under the impression that he must still cover his ex on said benefits. Is this required by law or considered "standard practice" in a divorce settlement. I should point out that he pays his child support without fail and his ex makes twice what he does annually. I was under the impression that his only legal obligation would be to ensure his children are adequately covered (which of course he would). Please can someone advise?
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Old 11-29-2008, 04:36 PM
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is there any sort of separation agreement written up between them??
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Old 11-29-2008, 05:06 PM
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There is currently no agreement but this is something that she has asked for. Is it mandatory? Does he look bad in front of a judge if he does not include her but gives her fair warning that she will need to acquire her own health benefits?
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Old 11-30-2008, 11:27 AM
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There is no requirement under the law, but it's pretty standard practice to maintain the coverage, until they are divorced I think.
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Old 11-30-2008, 12:19 PM
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Do you know if a judge would frown on him removing her from his policy if his health benefit provider has changed and he has to resubmit the paperwork? I feel so awful for what he is going through with all this. He is so worried about what a judge would say that he is jumping through hoops for her and she is demanding everything he has but allowing him very minimal unfair access to his children. Thanks for responding
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Old 11-30-2008, 05:36 PM
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Unless he is participating in the cost of the coverage (i.e. it's costing him money to have her on the plan), it could appear vindictive to take her off the policy.

On the other hand, if he is paying for her coverage, it doesn't seem unreasonable to take her off now that they aren't together anymore.

The thing is, one wants to be and appear to be, reasonable and focused on settlement. He could use the insurance coverage as a bargaining chip towards settlement.
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Old 11-30-2008, 11:25 PM
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Default Estranged spouses remaining on benefits..

In our situation my partner has been told by the Judge that he must keep his two children on his benefits AS WELL AS HIS EX until such time that the divorce proceedings are finalized.
There is no separation agreement in place (as of yet) although there have been motions brought forth regarding this. My partner has even had to provide proof of ongoing coverage to allay any fears that he may have removed his ex from the plan.
If there is no other coverage through their own employment it is unlikely that a Judge would rule that someone be removed if indeed they wish to continue being covered.
It doesn't matter if a person is paying for the plan through work nor does it matter that they are co-habitating with a new common-law partner for 5 years that ISN'T covered!!
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Old 12-02-2008, 07:30 AM
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My experience is that the children are to remain on any coverage so as long as they have it. In some cases which tend to not be the norm, is that an individual may be order to maintain coverage even in the absence of company coverage if they have the ability to do so.

As for the ex spouse, void an agreement to the contrary I feel that coverage should be maintained until such a time as the divorce has been granted. Again, in some cases, it has been awarded that coverage for the ex spouse be maintained for an extended period within the terms of an agreement/order even after divorce.
I do not feel he is obligated to maintain he ex’s coverage as in our case my husband did not keep the ex on coverage once they were legally separated, only the child.

If he is not legally divorced, and is that worried, I think he could easily maintain her on his coverage with a letter to the fact that a divorce has not taken place. And seek to have his ex’s coverage terminated formally with a separation agreement or divorce judgement due to the terms of his employer coverage RE dependants.
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Old 12-02-2008, 10:43 AM
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Trish, you said his ex makes twice as much as he does. Does she have her own coverage at work?

They should both cover the children.
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Old 12-02-2008, 12:20 PM
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In our court order it states that each party shall provide full coverage for the child as soon as the benefits are made available to them through their place of employment. This way, there are no arguments about who covers the kids... and each parent has their own coverage and is responsible for covering the children as well.
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