How to Remove a Spouse From Health Insurance

Find out how to remove a spouse from a health insurance policy and all the implications involved with Savvy. 

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, updated on July 10th, 2023       

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If you share a health insurance policy with your spouse, there may come a time when you need to remove them from your cover. This could be due to a separation or divorce, or other reasons such as health insurance being provided as part of a new job. 

However, it’s important to understand the process involved and any implications that may come with removing a spouse from your health insurance policy. Find out about the process of removing a spouse from your health insurance policy in Australia here with Savvy.  

How do I remove my spouse from my health insurance policy?

To remove your spouse from your health insurance policy, you’ll usually need to contact your insurance provider, explain what you wish to do and follow their specific advice about the steps which are necessary to take. This may include providing documentation to your insurer, such as a divorce certificate. 

It’s worth noting that only the primary policyholder can add or remove anyone from their policy, so if the policy isn’t in your name, you won’t be able to make this change. In that situation, your spouse or former spouse would have to remove you if they’re the primary policyholder. 

It’s very important to let your insurer know as soon as possible if there’s a change in your living circumstances, such as a separation or a divorce. This is because your insurer will need to make changes to the policy details to ensure the cover is still relevant and applicable to anyone remaining on the policy (assuming it is a couples or family policy). 

What alternatives are available if I no longer have health insurance with my spouse?

If you previously had a couples health insurance policy with no children involved, you have the option of getting your own singles health insurance policy. Your existing health fund should be able to assist you in transferring to a singles policy, or you can compare some of the policies which are currently available in Australia through Savvy and our panel of insurers before making up your mind about a new policy.   

However, if you’ve previously had a family health insurance policy which included coverage for your children and are now in the process of separating or divorcing, it's important to consider the future health insurance coverage for your children.  

How this issue is resolved will depend on the custody arrangements you make with your ex-spouse or partner and the financial agreements you reach for providing health insurance for your children. The following options may be available to you: 

  • One parent can pay for a single health insurance policy, while the other custodial parent can take out a single parent policy that covers the children 
  • If you share custody of your children, both parents can take out a single parent policy that covers the children 
  • You may ask your health fund to temporarily pause your health cover on hardship grounds until you resolve separation issues 
  • You may cancel your private health insurance entirely until your financial situation is more stable 

It's important to work out the financial arrangements for paying the premium of a single parent policy if you share custody of your children. This should be part of your overall financial agreements during divorce proceedings. By considering these options and coming to an agreement, you can ensure that your children continue to have access to private health insurance coverage after separation. 

Questions about removing your spouse from your health insurance policy

Do I have to inform my spouse that I am removing them from my health insurance policy?

Legally, you don’t have to tell your former spouse that you’re removing them from your health insurance policy. However, it's recommended that you do inform them of your intention to remove them from your shared policy. This is particularly important if you are going through a separation or divorce, as your ex-spouse may need to obtain their own singles health insurance coverage. It's also important to consider the legal implications of removing your spouse from your policy, as health insurance paid in advance is considered a legal asset when it comes to divorce. You should seek independent legal advice if necessary.

Can my spouse request to be removed from my health insurance policy?

Yes – your spouse can request to be removed from your health insurance policy, but you’ll have to be the policyholder to make this change. 

Will removing my former spouse from my health insurance policy affect their coverage immediately?

Yes – the change will take place almost immediately after notifying your health insurance provider. Therefore, it’s a good idea to make sure there are no policy claims pending before removing someone from a health insurance policy.   

Will removing my ex-spouse from my health insurance policy make my policy cheaper?

Removing a spouse from a health insurance policy may affect the premium for the remaining members, depending on the policy type and the insurance provider. If you decide to change from a family policy to a single or single parent policy, there may be a reduction in the premium, but this will depend on how many people were previously covered by the policy and what type of hospital cover or extras policy you have.  

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