Private health insurance: Age for dependent children from 25 to 31: Medibank, AHM, BUPA, HCF, NIB

The huge change to private health insurance that every Australian family should know about – and it could save you thousands

  • Age limit for dependent children for private health insurance raised from 25 to 31
  • Change was announced in the 2020-21 budget but has now been rolled out
  • The new rules could save families with a single child more than $1000 a year

A major private health insurance change has flown under the radar but it could be saving you thousands of dollars.

The age limit for dependent children on a private health family policy has been raised from 25 to 31, meaning younger Aussies can receive coverage for longer.

While the change was announced in the 2020-21 Budget, it has only recently come into effect.  

The budget document states the change ‘will help provide continuity of care for younger Australians and encourage them to continue with private health insurance (PHI) when they reach the age of 31, which is the age at which Lifetime Health Cover commences.

‘Allowing dependents to remain on the family policy until the start of Lifetime Health Cover provides them with a clear moment for decision about maintaining their PHI, and increases PHI’s attractiveness to young people.’

The age limit for dependent children on a private health family policy has been raised from 25 to 31, resulting in the individual being able to be included in plans for longer.

The age limit for dependent children on a private health family policy has been raised from 25 to 31, meaning younger Aussies can receive coverage for longer 

Families with a child 25 to 31 with low-level hospital and extras cover can save up to a year as a result of the change

Families with a child 25 to 31 with low-level hospital and extras cover can save up to $1010 a year as a result of the change

Medibank, AHM, BUPA, HCF and Teachers’ Health had already raised the dependent age limit with NIB, Australian Unity, GMHBA and Frank Health Insurance saying they are planning to. 

‘This was changed because more and more people are staying at home longer and regulation that made sense 30 years ago, now does not make sense,’ Ben Harris from Private Healthcare Australia told 9News.

Families with a child 25 to 31 with low-level hospital and extras cover can save up to $1010 a year.

Households with two adult children may be able to save up to $3812-a-year, according to data from Compare Club, with families.

While families with three could be $5604 better off and those with four can save about $7396.

Margaret Guthrie said her and her husband were surprised to learn they could save almost $1600 a year as a result of the change.

‘I wasn’t aware of it. As soon as I found out, I included all three of my eligible children on my private cover,’ Ms Guthrie said.

Medibank, AHM, BUPA, HCF and Teachers’ Health had already raised the dependent age limit with NIB, Australian Unity, GMHBA and Frank Health Insurance saying they are planning to

Andrew Davis from Compare Club said a study found 82 per cent of people weren’t aware of the change which allows more than 300,000 adult children to move back onto their parents’ policies.

‘It also has the potential to give people a better level of cover than they might otherwise have,’ Mr Davis said.

There is a catch though dependent children with parents in a de facto relationship cannot re-access the family policy and a one-off 25 per cent loading fee applies when including adult children back on the family policy.

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