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New York Governor to Propose Extended Health Coverage Eligibility

January 12, 2009
Related Topics: Medical Benefits Law, Benefit Design and Communication, Latest News
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New York Gov. David Paterson said Wednesday, January 7, that he will propose legislation to require employers purchasing health insurance coverage from commercial insurers to extend coverage to dependents up to age 29.

Under the proposal, all dependent family members 18 to 29 would be entitled to continued coverage under their parents’ employment-based health care plan. While employers could require employees to pick up the full cost of the extended coverage, the cost likely would be significantly less compared to coverage in the personal-lines market.

Paterson said his proposal is aimed at reducing the number of New Yorkers without health insurance, noting that 31 percent of the state’s uninsured are residents 19 to 29.

Numerous states have passed similar measures in recent years, including neighboring New Jersey, which allows employees’ dependents to retain coverage to age 31.

Filed by Jerry Geisel of Business Insurance, a sister publication of Workforce Management. To comment, e-mail editors@workforce.com.

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