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Will my health insurer know if I fib about a relationship? Like if I say my boyfriend is my husband to get him coverage?

Yes, it’s possible the health insurance company will find out about your lie.  Employers and insurers are keeping an eye on who is listed as dependents to make sure no one is fraudulently receiving health insurance benefits. 

To keep health insurance costs down, many companies now require that employees provide documentation to verify a dependent or spouse’s eligibility for the job-based health insurance plan. 

If your company doesn’t require documentation to add a spouse to your plan, it doesn’t mean you won’t be caught later in your lie.

Many employers regularly conduct dependent eligibility audits to verify people listed as dependents qualify for coverage under its guidelines.   This is done because even if your employer doesn’t pay your dependent’s premium it still bears the responsibility of making certain only individuals who are eligible are covered under their health plan.

Ineligible dependents making claims, especially large ones, could cause the whole company’s premiums to rise the next year. 

I wouldn’t risk the wrath of your employer by trying to sneak one past them and place your boyfriend on your health insurance plan. 

Unfortunately, open enrollment for individual plans for 2014 is over.  So unless your boyfriend’s situation makes him eligible for a special enrollment period, he will have to wait to shop until open enrollment starts in November 2014 for coverage starting in 2015. 

Last updated: Jun. 24, 2014