Health Care Reform Website

Grandfathered Plans

“Grandfathered” plans are health insurance plans that existed before the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was signed into law on March 23, 2010. These plans are exempt from many, but not all, of the ACA’s coverage mandates.Certain mandates, such as coverage of dependents up to age 26 and no dollar limits on essential health benefits, apply to both grandfathered and non-grandfathered plans.

A plan may lose its “grandfathered” status if significant changes are made that reduce benefits or increase costs. For additional information on “grandfathered” plans, see our series of Briefings linked below.

Additional Information

Implementation Guidance Grandfathered Plans
     This Briefing offers guidance for plan sponsors who wish to maintain the grandfathered status of their group health plans.


Changes to the Grandfathered Plans Regulations
     This Briefing outlines the rules issued that allow some employee benefit plans to retain their grandfathered status.


Grandfathered Plans – Part II
     This Briefing provides an overview of the provisions of the Affordable Care Act applicable to plans that lose their grandfathered status.


Regulations Issued for Grandfathered Plans
     This Briefing outlines the initial regulations that define grandfathered plans, as well as special rules for collectively bargained plans.