Domestic Diversions

First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes health insurance

The New York Times presents the flip side of a problem we deal with in divorce on a regular basis: health insurance. [See my related post on COBRA.] Kevin Sack writes about people who “rush to marry” in order to secure health care coverage for their new spouse (excerpt):
In a country where insurance is out of reach for many, it is not uncommon for couples to marry, or even to divorce, at least partly so one spouse can obtain or maintain health coverage.

There is no way to know how often it happens, but lawyers and patient advocacy groups say they see cases regularly.

In a poll conducted this spring by the Kaiser Family Foundation, a health policy research group, 7 percent of adults said someone in their household had married in the past year to gain access to insurance. The foundation cautions that the number should not be taken literally, but rather as an intriguing indicator that some Americans “are making major life decisions on the basis of health care concerns.”


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