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Healthcare Pushing Couples to the Altar

Love isn't the only reason people decide to exchange vows, and a Kaiser Family Foundation poll found that in just the past year 7 percent of adults in the US married for health insurance. These weren't fake relationships, rather most were couples that ultimately chose marriage when they may not have otherwise. Even if both individuals are working it's likely that for one reason or another — usually cost — one person's insurance is more appealing than the other.

ABC News gives the example of a couple that marries several months before schedule so that the groom could have his teeth fixed. His employer didn't offer dental insurance and his teeth needed extensive (and expensive) surgery. Another couple lived together for 30 years and finally decided to get married because the self-employed bride was paying many times more for insurance than she would if covered by her new husband's plan.

And isn't it interesting that this story was published on the same day as one criticizing the quality of health care in the US? On average, we're spending twice as much per person as most other industrialized countries, yet 75 million people are without adequate insurance and the quality of care here is hardly up to par.


Join The Conversation
seraphicstar seraphicstar 9 years
hubby and i planned our wedding as may of 07... but then I ended up losing my insurance (long story...) in august of 06 and we got married at the town hall later that month. our parents acted like i was pregnant or trying to trap him or something crazy... and the hall had already been booked for may so... why not a few months early? lol.
carhornsinapril carhornsinapril 9 years
my fiance was pushing to elope so i could use his benefits, rather than pay $520 for COBRA every month. luckily, since we live in NYC, we were able to register as domestic partners, and i'm now covered under his insurance for $30 a month. the only catch is that the value of my health coverage is counted as taxable income for him, so we'll take a bit of a hit there. that's a bit of a bummer for gay & lesbian couples who don't have the option of getting married at all.
ilanac13 ilanac13 9 years
that's actually something that i've been thinking a lot about. my fiance doesn't have health insurance becuase he's considered a free-lancer at his job - so that means that he can't really go to the dr as often as necessary since it's really expensive. i'm really happy that i have insurance so that when we get married he'll finally have coverage.
Liss1 Liss1 9 years
ImLissy, please keep following up with your bf's insurance. This happended to my husband before we got married. They kept telling him they had to bring the paperwork from the other office and then they forgot it and this went on for months and then he ended up hurting his back and needing back surgery and he didn't have insurance so we will be paying the neurosurgeon for many, many years. We got married shortly after his surgery and now he has been on my insurance ever since and i will never take a job now without insurance because of that. We never thought it was an issue until of course we were thousand and thousand of dollars in debt.
bleached bleached 9 years
Wow. This fits right into the discussion in on CitizenSugar.
bellaressa bellaressa 9 years
Weird - it sucks not to have insurance. Very hard. It's weird that some jobs even if you work ft is expensive and sometimes buying seperate insurance is lot more expensive. I can see why some people would get married for the insurance especially if one actually utilize most of the benefits. Other than that a low plan for those who hardly go is best.
GeriAnne1932 GeriAnne1932 9 years
Interestingly enough, my aunt DIDN'T marry her partner because somehow if they were to marry he would lose his insurance benefits or some monetary support because he was quite sick. I don't really understand it and I was younger my mother would just say "they're not married for insurance reasons" Maybe it was a consiracy coverup on my family's behalf, but that's what I believe to be the case :)
syako syako 9 years
and what about this report ( that we have the most cancer survival rates in the world? :?
tiff58 tiff58 9 years
My fiance has been on my insurance ever since we began living together through the partner insurance that my company offers.
McCubcakes McCubcakes 9 years
yah, we have partner insurance at my office so my boyfriend is on my insurance. it's great. the only difference between partner insurance and "marriage" insurance is the partner insurance premium is taken out after takes, unlike mine and/or my husband's (if I had one).
Twinkle1 Twinkle1 9 years
Wow 30 decades is a long time.
CoralAmber CoralAmber 9 years
I work part time and my boyfriend and I often joke that we should get married earlier than planned so I can have insurance. Right now I'm dangerously doing without and using free community programs for the basics. My Aunt who has been living with a man for over a decade is finally thinking about marrying mostly to be on his insurance.
imLissy imLissy 9 years
That's neat darkangel! all companies should do that. My bf is supposed to get insurance, but no one at his company can tell him anything about it, wtf??? He's been working there for months now and hasn't signed up for any benefits. I worry, I do. God forbid he's in a car accident or something? We'll be in debt the rest of our lives. We do plan on getting married, but I've thought of moving the wedding up just because of this. *sigh*
darkangel2305 darkangel2305 9 years
I have insurance through my employer, with which I am happy. But my bf's company has a "partner" policy. So you don't need to be married to be under your partner's policy, just prove you reside in the same home. I love his company and I think this is a very cool benefit, especially for same-sex couples :)
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