Insurance is considered a form of property in a divorce. The owner of the insurance policy controls the policy and has the right to name the beneficiaries. Although some laws prohibit the changing of insurance policies while a divorce is pending, once a divorce is final, insurance can become an important issue. Divorce is a qualifying event for benefits under Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1985 (COBRA). Under this act, any person who would lose employer-based coverage because of divorce can choose to purchase continued coverage for up to 36 months. The act applies to employers with 20 or more employees, but the coverage is not automatic. The spouse seeking coverage must contact the employer within 60 days of the qualifying event and complete the necessary paperwork. Some decrees include a provision for life insurance on the provider, to protect the support order.
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