ASD Insurance

Share your company’s insurance plan status with this form! Help out our community!

States throughout the country are enacting anti-discrimination bills ending the differential treatment of our children on the spectrum. These laws, also known as insurance mandates, apply to specific insurance policies that are controlled by state law (some benefits look like insurance but are controlled by ERISA – see below).

AutismVotes, an initiative of Autism Speaks, tracks these laws and the progress of bills in those states that do not yet have mandated coverage for autistic spectrum disorders. This map of state autism insurance laws will help you learn about the specifics relevant for you.

Am I covered?

This is the hard part. The short and unsatisfying answer is I don’t know. You don’t know either. If you work for a large company in several states, you may not even know which state might govern your insurance benefits and mandates. But, it isn’t as hard to find out as you might expect.

So, since it is virtually impossible for most of us to figure out what is going on from looking at our insurance cards, here are the steps for you:

  1. Call your company’s internal benefits manager if you have one.
  2. Call the number on your card asking about benefits.
  3. Submit a claim and hope for the best.

Share your company’s insurance plan status with this form! Help out our community!

Additional information:

  • ERISA
    1. There are certain benefits that look like insurance, can even be administered by the same companies, but are controlled by the federal law known as ERISA.
    2. ERISA exclusively governs all sorts of aspects of employee benefits plans (we say it “preempts” state law). It contains a section, though, that allows the states to continue regulating insurance. Now that sounds like that would be the end of that, but the way that these companies do business means that what looks like insurance often isn’t.
    3. The fact that health care benefits at a company can be controlled by either of two entirely different and mutually exclusive laws is hard to understand; even lawyers are confused by this specific federal preemption issue, so try to just accept it at first before worrying about understanding it!
  • NJ Insurance claims
    1. Introduction to the insurance claims process from Christina Peck — http://www.blessedwithautism.com/
    2. Autism Votes FAQ for NJ.
    3. Autism NJ FAQ.

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