Military Spouse’s Health Care by Mary Elizabeth Davis

As a former military dependent, I am keenly aware of the importance of military health care coverage. My mom, as many other former military spouses, is a 20/20/20 spouse. This means that my parents were married for at least twenty years, my dad was active duty for at least twenty years, and there was a twenty year overlap between the marriage and my dad's service. (Put simply, my mom was an "active duty spouse" for over twenty years.)

A 20/20/20 spouse will keep her ID card and military health care privileges, so long as she does not remarry. This is a crucial benefit for many women, particularly with the rising cost of health care.

In a recent conversation with Attorney Mark E. Sullivan, well-known in North Carolina and nationally for his expertise in military family issues, he told me that there is a provision for health care for spouses who do not meet the 20/20/20 qualification. He directed me to an article by Georgia family law attorney William John Camp entitled, "The Continuation of Health Care Benefits Program (CHCBP) As a Long-Term Health Care Option for Former Military Spouses."

As of the date of this writing, the CHCBP provides long-term health care coverage for $311 per month for those who are eligible.

See this article for more details:
http://meetings.abanet.org/webupload/commupload/FL115277/newsletterpubs/rc_sum08.pdf

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