Minor but noteworthy: NJ already allowed kids to stay on parents' plans up to 31 yrs old

Hat Tip To: 
Mary Ann James, Kenneth FInegold, Russell Malm

Earlier today I received the following question via Twitter:

@charles_gaba off-topic? NJ had coverage 4 adult until age of 30-31? Do they go down to 26 under ACA and if so, did you account for that?

— Mary Ann James (@ernestine1006) April 13, 2014

I honestly wasn't sure how to answer this. I had heard that some states already required insurers to allow kids up to 26 to be covered, but wasn't previously aware that NJ (or any other state) went beyond 26...

@ernestine1006 I have no idea. Didn't know any state required policies to offer higher than 26. Would imagine it works like min. wage...

— Charles Gaba (@charles_gaba) April 13, 2014

...and thanks to the power of Twitter, this was quickly confirmed to be the case:

@charles_gaba @ernestine1006 After aging out of ACA, child can opt into NJ DU31 law. http://t.co/ldAmd3dT9n

— Russell Malm (@russwm) April 13, 2014

@ernestine1006 @charles_gaba Affordable Care Act provision does not preempt preexisting state laws that go higher.

— Kenneth Finegold (@khf17) April 13, 2014

@charles_gaba @ernestine1006 But preexisting state laws generally narrower (e.g. full-time students only).

— Kenneth Finegold (@khf17) April 13, 2014

@charles_gaba @ernestine1006 NJ specifics at http://t.co/Org1GSjyBE.

— Kenneth Finegold (@khf17) April 13, 2014

...and sure enough, when you go to that link...

Coverage of Young Adults in New Jersey Up to Age 31

Coverage of Children until Age 26
The federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, enacted March 23, 2010, requires that dependent children be covered under group and individual plans at least until age 26, IF dependent children are covered at all.  Coverage of dependent children may no longer be limited based on whether the child is financially dependent on the parent, or residing in the parent’s household, or a full-time student.  The young adult may remain covered under his or her parent’s plan even if he or she marries. (However, neither the young adult’s spouse nor child is entitled to coverage under the young adult’s parent’s plan).  A young adult may be removed from his or her parent’s plan – if it is a “grandfathered” health plan – before reaching age 26 if the young adult could be covered through a group health plan as an employee or an employee’s spouse.  Generally, “grandfathered” plans are health plans that were in effect on or before March 23, 2010. 

Coverage Options for Young Adults after Age 26
When a young adult ages-out of a group health plan after his or her 26th birthday, he or she will have the option to remain with the group’s coverage for an additional period of time by making a continuation election pursuant to:  (1) COBRA, (2)New Jersey’s Small Group Continuation (NJSGC) law, or (3) the New Jersey Dependent Under 31 law (DU31).  A young adult who ages out of a parent’s individual health benefits plan doesn’t have these continuation rights.

If a young adult’s parent becomes covered under a group health benefits plan sometime after the young adult reaches age 26, but before the young adult’s 31st birthday, the young adult MAY be eligible to enroll as an overage child of the parent by making a DU31 election, even if the young adult didn’t age-out of other coverage, and even if the young adult currently has other coverage in effect (other than Medicare).  If the young adult has coverage under his or her own employer plan or an individual policy, the young adult would have to give up the existing policy to move to the parent’s plan.

Of course, a young adult always is eligible to purchase individual health coverage if he or she is a New Jersey resident who is not eligible for a group health plan as an employee or spouse of an employee, or eligible for Medicare.

The More You Know...®