common law spouse and health insurance

Does anyone know if a common law spouse must be covered by health insurance?

 Thanks Wendy


  • 4 Comments sorted by Votes Date Added
  • It depends on whether the state where you're located recognizes common-law marriages. What state are you in?
  • Our company has locations in Arizona and the Washington, D.C. area.  I heard on the radio, just last week, that Arizona is considering passing legislation to allow domestic partner benefits.  I haven't been able to find anything on the website.  Does anyone have any information regarding this?  And, if this passes in Arizona, would we have to do this in our D.C. office too, to be consistent?


  • I think you may be talking about Prop 107 in AZ . . see

    D.C also has some rules for DP: District of Columbia (D.C.):

    • Benefits of Domestic Partnership Under District of Columbia (D.C.) Law:
      • Hospital visitation rights.
      • Domestic partnership registry in the mayor's office.
      • Health insurance coverage for partners of district government employees.
      • Family or bereavement leave.
  • Either your state regulates it or it is governed by your policy.  If you state does not address the issue, consult your plan document.  In Texas, the state does not address the issue.  We rely on the definition of "dependent" in our plan document.  Another simple (and safe) test in those states that do not define dependents:  Develop a standard form that requires the employee to swear that the dependent(s) listed on their health insurance are also their dependents for IRS tax purposes.
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