This Day On The Street
Continue to site
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

Family Secrets: Adult Children's Health Insurance Claims Can Be Private

"While mom and dad may be footing the bill, they do not have the right to an explanation about the bill they are paying," says Katherine Woodfield, a health insurance broker in Gladstone, N.J., and author of "Don't Buy That Health Insurance: Become an Educated Health Care Consumer."

Health care providers can only release information they feel is medically relevant and to which the patient would not reasonably object. However, if the adult child does not want any information shared, the provider must honor that request.

Yet the issues aren't always black and white when it comes to health insurance claims for adults who remain on a parent's plan and are worried about privacy. HIPAA's purpose is to ensure the confidentiality of the insured. It is meant to keep information private from associates and third parties that don't need to know -- not necessarily from people within the same policy.

Health insurance companies, while not expressly mentioned in that law, likewise should not disclose any information about the bills they are asking the parents to pay. The insurance company must follow the intent of the law -- which is why an EOB is coded in a way that doesn't explain what the charges are for.

Here's more about health information privacy from the Department of Health and Human Services.

That said, adults who are on a parent's health policy and are concerned about privacy should go the extra mile. When seeing a provider:
  • Make your privacy request to the doctor so it's in your chart.
  • Talk to the front desk and request to have the EOB sent directly to you, not the policyholder.
  • Call the customer service 800 number of your health plan before you visit the doctor and have them note that EOBs, balance bills or co-pay statements should not go to the policyholder but be sent directly to you. receives compensation from carriers when readers choose to request insurance quotes. This article is provided by an external partner that is solely responsible for the content.
2 of 2

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Real Money

More than 30 investing pros with skin in the game give you actionable insight and investment ideas.

Product Features:
  • Access to Jim Cramer's daily blog
  • Intraday commentary and news
  • Real-time trading forums
Only $49.95
14-Days Free
14-Days Free
AAPL $93.99 0.31%
FB $102.01 0.10%
GOOG $682.40 -0.10%
TSLA $151.04 0.38%
YHOO $27.04 1.05%


Chart of I:DJI
DOW 15,973.84 +313.66 2.00%
S&P 500 1,864.78 +35.70 1.95%
NASDAQ 4,337.5120 +70.6750 1.66%

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs