COBRA

Posted September 30th, 2020 in Employers, Producers

The Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1985 (COBRA) requires employers with 20 or more employees to offer continuation coverage under a group health plan for periods of 18, 29 or 36 months depending on the qualifying event.

Posted June 2nd, 2020 in Employers, Producers

Many employee benefit laws only apply to employers who have a certain number of employees. The challenging part is that each law has its own definition and rules on how to count the number of employees when determining if a law applies to an employer. Here are some key examples:

Posted April 30th, 2020 in Employers, Producers, Individuals

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has issued guidance that will impact COBRA procedures, special enrollment periods, and claims procedures. The guidance will extend the length of certain time periods applicable to group health plans, disability plans and other welfare plans regulated by the ERISA law. Plan participants and beneficiaries will have additional time to do the following:

Posted March 4th, 2020 in Employers, Producers

COBRA has been an administrative challenge for employers dating back to 1986 when it first became effective. On the surface, it’s easy to comprehend COBRA and its purpose, but behind the scenes, an employer has a lot of obligations it must account for to ensure compliance with the law. Take this scenario for example:

Posted August 1st, 2019 in Employers, Producers

Is it or isn’t it a qualifying event?

Medicare entitlement of the employee is listed as a COBRA qualifying event; however, it is rarely a qualifying event. In situations where it is a qualifying event, it is only a qualifying event for the spouse or children that are covered under the group health plan.

Posted March 21st, 2019 in Employers, Producers

That flu shot you're providing to employees. Are you offering it as a benefit to COBRA beneficiaries? Because you should be.

While COBRA is conceptually easy to understand, it is tactically more challenging to administer. Many employers are unaware that certain benefits are subject to COBRA. On the other hand, some employers are offering COBRA in situations which they don't have to because of a misunderstanding of the law.

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Posted May 15th, 2018 in Employers, Producers
Two things happened in 1986. Run-D.M.C released their hit song, “It’s Tricky,” and COBRA became effective. Thirty-two years later, Run-D.M.C.’s music is still popular, and COBRA administration is still tricky—especially when it comes to Flexible Spending Account (FSAs). Add FSA carryover to the mix, and it gets even trickier.
 
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Posted October 3rd, 2017 in Producers, Employers, Individuals
Each year employers must provide a written notice to Medicare-eligible employees who are covered under their group health plan. The notice must include information about the creditable coverage status of the prescription drug benefit. In other words, the notice tells employees if the prescription drug benefit on the group health plan is at least as good as the standard Medicare Part D plan. 
 
Posted August 15th, 2017 in Producers, Employers
Several states have continuation coverage laws in place, and Illinois is no different. In fact, the state of Illinois has three different continuation coverage laws: Illinois Continuation, Illinois Spousal Continuation, and Dependent Continuation. Each law applies to fully-insured group health plans and HMOs that are issued in the state of Illinois. The length of continuation coverage and the persons eligible for coverage vary depending on which law is in play. 
 
Posted September 19th, 2016 in Producers, Employers, Individuals
Employers must provide a written notice on an annual basis to any Medicare-eligible individuals who are covered under a group health plan that includes prescription drug coverage. The notice is required to include information as to whether the prescription drug coverage is considered to be creditable. In other words, is the prescription drug coverage at least as good as the standard Medicare Part D plan? 
 

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