NH Law Extends Medical Coverage for Ill College Students

July 6, 2006 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - New Hampshire Governor John Lynch signed a bill that allows seriously ill college students to continue to be covered under their parents' health insurance policies if they can not maintain full-time student status.

Business Insurance reports that the measure allows college students to retain coverage for up to 12 months after they take a medical leave of absence from school. Insurers may require the students’ attending physicians to provide documentation and certification of the medical necessity for the leave of absence.

According to Business Insurance, the law applies only to fully insured policies that commercial insurers and health maintenance organizations offer since state laws that relate to employee benefit plans are preempted by federal law.

The measure, called “Michelle’s Law” in memory of a Manchester, New Hampshire, college student who continued her studies while battling cancer to maintain health insurance coverage, went into effect late last month.