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A “General Notice of COBRA Continuation Coverage Rights” needs to be given to every employee that enrolls in your benefits program. This obligation is based on an ERISA Technical Release No. 86-2 issued by the US Department of Labor. This includes enrollment in your health, dental or life insurance plans. If you do not have a copy of this General Notice, it can be found on our Web site home page and downloaded. A good place to put this would be in your new employee packet. This is not a new rule, but one that is oftentimes overlooked. We have also posted a sample “Notice of Continuation Election” (COBRA form) for you to use. It can be edited to your preference and should be placed on your company letterhead. If the employee/beneficiary does elect to continue coverage, most of the insurers have their own form to also complete. Sending this election notice fulfills your obligation and it only needs to be mailed first class to the last known address. Copies of your dated notification and any response should be kept. If the beneficiary goes beyond their 60 days to respond, they have lost their continuation of coverage right.

Federal law provides guidance in interpreting the phrase “the date coverage would otherwise end” to mean:

    • Such time as the group ceases offering group health coverage to any employee;
    • The qualifying beneficiary fails to pay the required premium.
   
> 20 Employees
< 20 Employees

Qualifying Event

“Who” is Eligible

COBRA

MN Continuation Law

 Employment Ends Retirement, Layoff, Leave, etc…(Gross Misconduct not Eligible)

Employee & Dependents who have been on the plan

1. 18 months, or

2. Enrollment in other group coverage, Medicare or

3. Date coverage would otherwise end

1. 18 Months, or

2. Enrollment in other group coverage

Child: Dependent member loses eligibility (turns 19 or 25 or full time students)

Child who has been on the plan

1. 36 months, or

2. Enrollment in other group coverage, Medicare or

3. Date coverage would otherwise end

1. 36 months, or

2. Enrollment in other

group coverage

3.Date coverage would otherwise end

Death of an Employee

Surviving spouse and dependent children who have been on theplan

1. 36 months, or

2. Enrollment in other group coverage, Medicare or

3. Date coverage would otherwise end

1. Enrollment in other group coverage

2. Date coverage would have ended, had employee not died

Divorce or Legal Separation

Former Spouse and any dependent children

1. 36 months, or

2. Enrollment in other group coverage

3. Date coverage would otherwise end

1. Enrollment in other group coverage

2. Date coverage would otherwise end

Medicare : Employee becomes eligible and enrolls in Medicare

Dependents of employees who have been on the plan

1. 36 months, or

2. Enrollment in other group coverage, Medicare, or

3.Date coverage would otherwise end

1. 36 months, or

2. Enrollment in other group coverage

3. Date coverage would otherwise end

Total Disability

Employee and dependents (additional continuation available if a dependent becomes disabled during a continuation period)

1. 29 months, or

2. Enrollment in other group coverage, Medicare, or

3. Date coverage would otherwise end

1. Indefinite if employee unable to engage in any paid employment

2. Date coverage would otherwise end

Notification Rules:

Employee has 60 days to notify the employer or plan administrator of a divorce, or child losing dependent status, etc…

Employer has 14 days to send COBRA Cont. notice.

Employee/Beneficiary has 60 days to respond and an additional 45 to pay premiums.

Employer has 10 days to send COBRA Cont. notice.

Employee/Beneficiary has 60 days to respond and an addition 45 to pay premiums.

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