Norton Introduces Bill Requiring Health Insurers to Directly Reimburse Divorced Parents for Children’s Medical Expenses

Jan 7, 2020
Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) introduced the Ensuring Child Health Coverage Compensation in Divorce Act today, which would require that health insurance providers reimburse divorced parents directly for any out-of-pocket medical expenses, regardless of the source of insurance.  Typically in a divorce, one parent is court-ordered to provide health insurance for the child, but the other parent may pay out-of-pocket for some reimbursable medical expenses.  Under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, group health insurers are required to directly reimburse a parent who pays for reimbursable out-of-pocket medical expenses.  However, other health insurers are not required to directly reimburse the other parent.  This bill would provide the same requirements for all health insurers to ensure that parents who pay for out-of-pocket medical expenses are directly reimbursed.  The issue was raised by one of Norton’s constituent in a letter.

“Families facing divorce are experiencing significant hardship,” Norton said.  “My bill would ensure that children are getting necessary medical care while easing these administrative burdens on families.”

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