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Does My Insurance Have To Cover Pregnancy Benefits For My Dependents?

Michelle Andrews answers a question from a reader about if the health law requires employer-sponsored insurance to cover maternity benefits for an employee’s dependents. 

Read Related Story >> Advocacy Group Seeks To Force Employers To Give Pregnancy Coverage To Dependents

QUESTIONDoes the ACA require employer sponsored insurance plans to provide pregnancy benefits to children of employees who are covered under their parent’s plan? — Jim

ANDREWSFederal law requires group health plans with 15 or more employees to cover maternity benefits for employees and their spouses. But the law doesn’t require that coverage for other dependents, including the children of employees. Under the Affordable Care Act, young adults can now stay on their parents’ health plans until they turn 26, but unfortunately they may still not be covered if they get pregnant. The law requires most individual and small group plans to cover maternity and newborn care as one of 10 “essential health benefits.” But those provisions don’t apply to the large-group plans that many people belong to. The children of workers at those companies may not be covered if they get pregnant.

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