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Girl wonderingOne major piece of the Affordable Care Act is that kids can stay on their parents’ health insurance until they are 26 years old. When a young person turns 26, they have many options as they prepare to buy their own health insurance. 

But, many young people wonder whether to go on their own plan or stay with their family's plan before turning 26.

Sometimes, staying on the family's plan helps a young person save money by not having to pay for a separate policy.

Still, as a child prepares to leave the nest, moving to a new plan may save more money than staying on the family plan.

  • If a young person lives out of state, they can stay on their parents’ plan no matter how far away they are. However, some doctors in the new state may be out of network for the insurance plan. Seeing doctors who are out of network may mean more money out of pocket. In this case, a young person might be better off on their own plan.
  • If a person marries before turning 26, it may be best to be on a separate plan or to join a spouse's plan. Changing coverage at marriage is not required by the Affordable Care Act.
  • If a person is on their family's plan, and is planning to have children, the children will not get coverage from the grandparents.
  • Additionally, some insurance companies charge extra to cover a policyholder’s dependents. It may be cheaper to put a young adult on his or her own policy, rather than add them to a parent’s. This scenario depends on the company.
  • The Affordable Care Act sometimes allow young people to qualify for certain subsidies when they buy their own plan. These qualifications are usually based on income. Buying a separate plan on the health care exchange for a child may be cheaper than buying a family plan on the exchange.

It is important to consider whether staying on a family member's plan or going separate is best for the young person. There are many different factors when making this decision.

This list is not exhaustive, and ECI Agency is here to help you make the best choice for you and your family. Call us today at (405) 373-2977 for more information on Oklahoma health insurance.

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