I may be completely off on this but I believe that health insurance is one of those things that should continue during separation if you currently carry your spouse. Or at least continue for long enough so that the spouse has a chance to get their own insurance…They may also be able to be removed during annual enrollment…
I know that my husband did drop his ex from his insurance but he gave her warning of when he would be dropping her, though they did have a separation agreement.
I think that the most common practice is that a separation agreement would protect you from future liability on claims because normally, equitable distribution and all is covered in the agreement. There is also normally a statement such as “Each party, from X date agrees to live separate and apart from one another as if they were not married”. This may make a difference on an insurance claim.
My suggestion to you would be, check out the sample separation agreement and modify it to suit your needs, consult an attorney to get one drawn up. A separation agreement protects you both and can settle a lot of issues that may normally end up in court.
Some states have a status of “legally separated” North Carolina does not. In this state you can be, single, married, widowed or divorced. You are legally separated on the date you live separate and apart, but we do not have a “legal separation.” Generally, you can drop your spouse when you get your divorce decree or during an open enrollment period. You should consult with an attorney before making any major changes such as dropping your spouse from your health insurance plan. Your employer is correct.
Helena M. Nevicosi
Attorney with Rosen Law Firm
4101 Lake Boone Trail, Suite 500
Raleigh, North Carolina 27607
919.787.6668 main phone
919.787.6361 main fax
301 McCullough Drive
Charlotte, NC 28262
Main Phone: (704)307.4600
Main Fax: (704) 9343.0044
Durham & Chapel Hill Office
1829 East Franklin Street
Chapel Hill, NC 27514
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My husband and I are separated. My employer is refusing to remove him from my health insurance plan because we do not yet have a divorce or separation agreement. They are saying this is a federal law, but I can’t find any reference in federal law to a separation agreement as a requirement for being removed from a health insurance plan – I can only find references to legal separation as a “qualifying event” for COBRA. Isn’t legal separation in NC defined as husband and wife living separately with no intent of reconciliation? My employer is refusing to accept proof of my husband’s new residency as proof of our legal separation. Who is correct about the definition of legal separation – me, or my employer? Is a separation agreement required in order to be legally separated in NC?