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IBX Insights

Health Insurance and Marriage: Insurance “How Tos” for Newlyweds

By September 5, 2017April 12th, 2022Health Insurance Member Resources
Shot of a newlywed couple sitting in the backseat of a car

Are there wedding bells in your future? Congratulations! You probably have a lot on your mind. While you are busy tackling the final to-dos and rehearsing the I dos, try and find some time to take a good look at the status of your health insurance as a couple.

Getting married is considered a “qualifying life event.” In health insurance terms, it means you can enroll in a new health plan or make changes to your existing health plan outside of Open Enrollment Period. That includes adding your new loved one (or loved ones) to your current health plan.

So, if you were married in the last 60 days or are planning to say “I do” in the next few months, now may be a good time to see if making a change would help you save money or provide one of you with a health plan that better meets your, and your new spouse’s, needs.

If you are currently enrolled in a health insurance plan, gather together the pricing and statements of benefits and consider the following scenarios:

  1. You or your spouse cancels your health plan and joins the other’s health plan available through his/her employer. “Employee + spouse” is often less expensive than two standard “employee only” selections. You also may find this is the best option for you if one partner has a health plan that you both feel more comfortable being covered under.
  2. You and your spouse cancel your health plan and you both switch to a new health plan available through the other’s employer. It’s called a special life event for a reason — things change. If you now need more or less coverage, this is a good time to make that adjustment. Need help choosing the best health plan for you and your spouse? Check out this helpful insurance shopping guide and/or watch the health insurance basics video.
  3. You both cancel your health plans and move to a new insurance provider. Depending on the size of your employer, you may find it more affordable to purchase an individual and family plan through a health insurer like Independence Blue Cross, or to use the federal health insurance marketplace to purchase a health insurance plan.
  4. You do nothing. At the end of the day, perhaps your relationship status may have changed, but your health insurance needs haven’t. If that’s the case, stick with what you’ve got, knowing you did the due diligence to confirm it’s still the right health plan for you.

Want to learn more about a specific qualifying event for health insurance? Check out our guide to events and timelines.

Interested in learning about individual and family plans available through Independence Blue Cross? Compare our plans now.

Paula Sunshine

Paula Sunshine is senior vice president and chief marketing executive at Independence Blue Cross. She oversees all commercial and consumer marketing activities, including digital assets such as and the IBX mobile app. Ms. Sunshine earned a bachelor of arts degree in mathematics from Emory University and a master of business administration from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.