California mulls letting adults add parents to health plans

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California could become the only state to let adult children add their parents as dependents to their health insurance plans, a policy proposal aimed at increasing insurance coverage among low-income people living in the country illegally who aren’t eligible for government-funded coverage.

Former President Barack Obama’s health law let parents keep their adult children on their health plans until at least age 26, a change that helped millions of young people transition to adulthood as jobs were scarce after the Great Recession. That change was so popular that many states have gone further and let adults keep their children on until age 30.

Now, California could do the same for older people who are transitioning into retirement after the pandemic. A proposal in the state Legislature authored by Assemblyman Miguel Santiago passed its first committee hearing on Tuesday. If it becomes law, California would be the only state that allows this, according to the state Department of Insurance.