Stephen J. Buhler, Attorney at Law

Women subject to loss of health insurance after divorce

As many of our Utah readers may know, divorce can be a messy situation in several ways. As a married couple, you share everything, and some of those things are more difficult to divide in the event of a divorce. Separating things such as bank accounts, a home, vehicles and other items accumulated over the course of the marriage can be settled with the help of a divorce lawyer in many cases.

What about things that you can't easily divide and can't live without, like health care? Many women are finding themselves without health insurance after getting divorced, most notably those who were previously covered as dependents on their husband's plan. According to reports, an estimated 65,000 women each year lose their health insurance coverage as a result of a divorce.

Sources indicate that a mere six months after divorcing their husbands, 17 percent of women were left uninsured. Of the roughly 115,000 women each year that lose private coverage due to divorce, only some of them were able to be bailed out by government insurance plans.

However, there is always the risk of falling between a government program and private coverage. In some cases, women are well-off enough that they are unable to qualify for these government plans, yet they are not well-off enough to pay the high prices of private insurance on their own.

Some things accumulated throughout the course of a marriage are able to be divided without stepping foot in court. When something like health coverage is at stake though, contacting an experienced divorce attorney might be an avenue you want to pursue.

Source:, "After Divorce, Many Women Lose Health Insurance," Daniel Akst, Nov. 14, 2012

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