health insurance spelled out on notebook

The transition from married life to divorced single life can be a very bumpy one. In an amicable divorce that proceeds uncontested, these bumps might be smoothed over through cooperation with your soon-to-be former spouse. But what can you do if that’s not the case? What if your spouse is very upset with you and refuses to work together to reach an agreement on questions pertinent to ending the marriage relationship? Read on to learn more about your legal rights regarding post-divorce health insurance in New Jersey. To ensure the best possible outcome, contact a Sussex County divorce attorney, who can guide and advise you with their years of experience in divorce cases.

What Happens to My Insurance After Divorce?

If you have insurance in your own name, nothing much will change policy-wise because of the divorce. More notable and life-altering health insurance changes would take place if you have health insurance through the spouse you are divorcing. Once your divorce finalizes, you as the dependent spouse will lose your coverage.

By New Jersey law, you are allowed to stay on your ex’s policy so long as the divorce is still in process. This gives you some time to speak with your attorney as you consider your options. In fact, after a Summons for Dissolution of Marriage gets filed, the insured spouse is prohibited from taking the otherwise uninsured spouse off their policy. The lawyer of the more vulnerable ex should, as soon as the proceedings begin, write a certification of insurance that includes automobile, health, life, and homeowner’s insurance. An Automatic Temporary Restraining Order (ATRO) will prevent an insured spouse from dropping their ex while the divorce process is still ongoing.

Keep in mind that children are not in danger of losing their insurance. Children will still be legally the dependents of both former spouses.

What Can I Do if I Lose My Health Insurance in the Divorce?

If you need time after the divorce ends to think about which new health insurance policy is right for you, COBRA may be helpful. COBRA stands for the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act. This piece of legislation lets you keep the same insurance you had before the divorce, even if you had it through your ex’s policy, for an additional 36 months. Paying for COBRA will be more costly than your policy has been before, as an employer is no longer helping reduce the expense. After the passage of Obamacare, health insurance marketplaces opened across the United States. Though potentially pricey in its own right, the New Jersey health insurance marketplace offers you the option of having health insurance even while unemployed or self-employed.