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Which parent pays for health insurance during an Ohio divorce?

On Behalf of | Jul 18, 2023 | Divorce |

When parents with dependent children divorce in Ohio, they generally need to reach some kind of settlement regarding how they will share financial responsibility for their children and how they’ll divide parenting time. There are a lot of details that go into the creation of an effective parenting plan, including numerous financial matters.

Oftentimes, parents focus on child support orders, as child support may require that the parent who earns more and/or has less time with the children provides financial support to better meet the children’s needs when they are with the other parent. However, those payments are only one of the forms of financial responsibility that parents need to address when they divorce. Health insurance and medical costs are often some of the biggest expenses for families. Which parent pays for health insurance when families share custody in Ohio?

Existing coverage should continue initially

During the early stages of divorce, the rule in Ohio requires that whichever parent currently provides insurance should continue doing so. Neither parent should intentionally cancel the coverage of the children immediately before or after filing for divorce. As the process moves forward, the courts may then enter an order establishing different rules for children’s health insurance coverage. The availability of an affordable policy and the current parenting arrangements can influence exactly what judges require from each parent in the family.

What will the other parent have to pay?

One parent typically won’t have an obligation to absorb all of the children’s healthcare costs. The parent who does not provide the policy or the parent with more time with the children will typically need to cover any ordinary medical expenses not covered by health insurance. Usually, this means contributing up to $100 per child toward care costs each year. Adults may need to negotiate how to divide large uncovered medical costs.

Parents are free to negotiate their own arrangements, and doing so may be easier when everyone understands the standard approach to such matters in an Ohio divorce. Learning more about different parental responsibilities and how to divide them during an Ohio divorce or separation may help parents cooperate with each other or more effectively prepare for family court.