Springfield, IL – Today, State Representative Margaret Croke’s legislation to require the other party or intended parent to a pregnancy to pay at least 50% of the pregnant person’s expenses passed the Illinois House. The bill would require at least 50% of a pregnant person’s health insurance premiums not covered by an employer or government program and any medical costs incurred after conception until, and including, costs related to delivery to be covered by the other intended party.
“Even with health insurance, pregnancy is expensive. Far too often, mothers find themselves saddled with a financial burden the moment their child is born, and struggle to dig out of it, especially as all of the associated costs of parenting are added,” said State Representative Margaret Croke. “This bill helps ease that burden, and ensures that the other intended party or parent is responsible for at least 50% of the costs associated with pregnancy. I’m proud that this bill passed the Illinois House today, and look forward to seeing it move through the Senate in the coming weeks to bring parity to the payment of pregnancy costs and support those welcoming a child here in Illinois.”
According to the Peterson-Kaiser Family Foundation Health System Tracker, the average cost of giving birth, including pregnancy, delivery, and postpartum care, is over $18,000, with the average out-of-pocket cost for those with health insurance still reaching nearly $3,000.
The legislation, called the Pregnancy Expenses Act, would be incorporated into the Parentage Act of 2015, which currently allows for a parent to recover “reasonable expenses” incurred during the pregnancy if an action is brought within two years of a child’s birth. The bill is modeled after a similar piece of legislation passed in Utah last year. The bill now moves to the Senate, where it is sponsored by State Senator Sara Feigenholtz. Read more about the bill at ilga.gov.