Whether Trump and company repeal Obamacare or amend it into oblivion, there are popular provisions they are likely to keep. Here is one; the adult child provision which current affects over three million “children.”
Here is a perfect example of overreach under the Affordable Care Act. Before Obamacare most plans, at least group plans, permitted a dependent child attending college to be covered under a parents plan until age 22,23,24 or sometimes 25 more than enough time to complete an education.
Before the health care law, insurance companies could remove enrolled children usually at age 19, sometimes older for full-time students. Now, most health plans that cover children must make coverage available to children up to age 26. By allowing children to stay on a parent’s plan, the law makes it easier and more affordable for young adults to get health insurance coverage.
Children can join or remain on a parent’s plan even if they are:
Not living with their parents
Not financially dependent on their parents
Eligible to enroll in their employer’s plan
Now look carefully at the above criteria. To the detriment of the parents plan and most likely fellow workers, a married, employed “adult” with employer coverage available can instead enroll under the parents plan.
Now why would they do that? Well, lower or no additional premium to pay and/or better benefits, which of course is simply adverse selection, one of the primary drivers of rising premiums under Obamacare. Yes the law makes it “more affordable for young adults to get health insurance coverage,” but that also means that someone else is picking up that cost … the parent’s employer and fellow workers and/or insurance company.
Unintended consequences? I’m not sure.