1. 5527 POINTS
    Marlin McKelvy
    President, Consumer Directed Benefit Solutions, Memphis, Tennessee
    Dependent children are eligible to be covered under their parent's health insurance plan up to age 26.  Regarding dropping a dependent from your health insurance coverage, it will depend upon whether you have an individual health insurance policy or whether you are covered under a group health insurance policy that includes a Section 125 plan.

    If you have an individual policy then it should be a simple matter of contacting your agent or the health insurance carrier and notifying them of your intention to drop the dependent child from your coverage.  It is most likely that you will need to complete and sign a termination request form so that all the legalities associated with terminating a person's coverage are complied with. 

    If you are covering your dependent under your group health insurance coverage through your employer and they have a Section 125 plan in place your situation will be more complicated.  If you don't know what a Section 125 plan is, if you are paying any portion of your health insurance premium and it is being taken out of your paycheck on a pre-tax basis then you are almost certainly subject to a Section 125 plan.  Check with your HR person, the business owner or their insurance broker to get a definitive answer to this issue.  Under IRS regulations because you are enjoying the advantages of pre-tax treatment for your share of your health insurance costs this advantage comes with some strings attached regarding the employee's ability to change their coverage outside of the group's normal open enrollment period.  Essentially you have to have what is called a "Change of Life Status Event" to change your coverage status outside of open enrollment time.  These are specific events such as marriage, divorce, adoption, losing coverage that you had elsewhere and a few other circumstances.  Just getting mad at your 23 year old son who won't get off the couch and plays X-Box all day (while certainly a problem) does not meet the criteria of a change of life status event and you would not be able to drop them from your coverage until your group's next open enrollment.
    Answered on July 9, 2014
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