Skip to comments.Abortion 'rider' offered by 7 Michigan insurers as controversial law takes effect
Posted on 03/10/2014 1:23:14 PM PDT by Darren McCarty
LANSING, MI -- Michigan women will not have the choice to buy an individual abortion "rider" when the state's controversial insurance law takes effect Thursday, but some employers may choose to provide the coverage for less than a dollar a month.
The law, initiated by a Right to Life Petition drive and approved by the Republican-led Legislature in early December, will prohibit insurance companies from selling policies that include abortion coverage as a standard feature.
Instead, they can offer the coverage through an optional policy add-on, known as a rider.
Seven insurers plan to offer riders for small and large-group employer plans, according to the Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Regulation. The optional coverage would cost employers between a penny and 32 cents a month per employee.
No insurers are planning to offer a rider for individual policies, most of which are sold through the Affordable Care Act website. That's not new, however. None of the "Obamacare" policies currently sold in Michigan include elective abortion coverage. The federal law includes cumbersome rules requiring insurers to separate out any taxpayer dollars used for abortion coverage, so many have simply not offered it.
Michigan's new insurance law takes effect this week, but most women will not see an immediate effect, according to DIFS spokesperson Caleb Buhs.
"Essentially, what's going to happen is that anybody who renews or purchases a new policy can no longer have elected abortion included in the base plan, but it's not going to strip it out for somebody who has coverage currently," said Buhs. "Most people who have coverage through an employer typically renew in October or September. Your coverage will stay the same until then."
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