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You can stay on your parents’ health plan until you turn 26, regardless of:

  • Your marital status
  • Where you live
  • Whether you go to school
  • Whether you’re financially independent

However, the health insurance plan doesn’t have to cover your new spouse or your children. 

The rule requiring health plans to extend coverage to children up to age 26 is part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, the landmark health care reform law passed by Congress and signed by President Barack Obama in March 2010. The provision for young adults went into effect in September of that year, and it applies to all individual health plans and new employer-sponsored plans that offer coverage to dependents.

Adding a child to a health plan usually doesn’t increase rates if you have family coverage. However, if a parent has single coverage and has to get family coverage to add you to the plan, that could double or triple premiums.