Is it legal to charge someone for adding their child to your health insurance plan?
Question Details: My ex-wife added our son to her husband's health insurance and now they want me to pay for the extra cost. Our parenting plan clearly states that the parent that is offered health insurance through an employer at a reasonable cost is responsible to carry insurance. So is it legal for then to charge me to add my son?
There is probably no right or wrong answer, which means that if you and they cannot work things out voluntarily, you may have to litigate (i.e. go to court) over the interpretation of the plan. Here are the issues:
1) If the plan states that "the parent that is offered health insurance through an employer," but the plan is not hers or through her employer, but is her husband's plan through his employer, does that fall under the parenting plan's obligations? After all, this is not her health insurance plan, but his; and he is not the child's parent, or bound by the parenting plan, or have any obligation to your son.
2) Is the cost reasonable? And what is is a reasonable cost? If it is not reasonsable--if any extra premium to make this a family plan with children--is too high, that would imply they could refuse to add him or, as here, seek a contribution from you.
We are answering based on what you wrote, not based on viewing the actual plan, but it is certainly possible that there some ambiguity in how the plan applies to this situation, and where there is ambiguity, either the parties need to work it out among themselves and go to court and let the judge decide.
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