The study aimed to identify whether payment forms and insurance schemes are associated with severe obstetric complications and maternal mortality. A hospital-based case-control study was conducted in two regions of Colombia, 2009-2011. Data were obtained from each woman's clinical history. Unconditional logistic regression was used. The sample included 1,011 patients: 337 cases and 674 controls. No quality component was statistically significant in either region. In Bogotá, the risk of obstetric complications was significantly higher in the contributive insurance scheme than in subsidized coverage or uninsured; Antioquia showed similar associations, but not statistically significant. Differences in maternal morbidity according to payment scheme were not statistically significant in either Antioquia or Bogotá. Factors associated with maternal morbidity and mortality differed according to the study population, suggesting the need for local studies to identify determinants and make appropriate decisions.