10 Things You Should Know About COBRA

Cobra health insurance is widely relied on in the USA today. When you lose your job, you don’t just have the stress of having to find another position, but the stress of losing out on your health insurance too. Fortunately, there are ways for you to continue having health insurance coverage until you have a hold on your situation. You may have the option of COBRA; this is health benefits that continue with the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA). It’s a federal law so may help protect you for a short period. So, what are the 10 things you should know about COBRA?

You May Qualify for 36 Months of Coverage

If you lose your job, through voluntary or involuntary reasons, you will be able to get eighteen months of coverage from COBRA. This is possible as long as you haven’t been dismissed for gross misconduct. However, your children or spouse can get up to thirty-six months of coverage if you’re eligible for Medicare or you pass away. Cobra health insurance may also be able to offer coverage if you separate from your partner.

COBRA Coverage Isn’t Available If Your Company Goes Out of Business

Let’s say you’ve been an employee with the same company for over ten-years. If they go out of business – for whatever reason – and they drop COBRA coverage, you won’t have any health insurance. There is no Cobra health insurance available in these circumstances.

No Cobra Health Insurance If Your Employer Drops Health Insurance

Cobra health insurance may not be available if your employer decides to stop all health insurance groups or benefits. That means COBRA isn’t an option for you. It’s an incredibly frustrating, unfortunately, it does happen. What’s more, if there are fewer than twenty employees, COBRA won’t be available either.

COBRA Benefits Are Lost If You Move Out of the Area

Cobra health insurance has specific coverage areas and that could become a problem if you plan to move anytime soon. For instance, you live in New York city and move to Chicago. You move outside the coverage area and may lose any benefits you were entitled to. It’s vital to know about these things before you move as you may need additional coverage in place.

Alternatives Are Available

While COBRA has become hugely popular over the last few years, more alternatives have come into play. Remember, a few years ago, there were fewer alternatives to Cobra health insurance, fortunately there are more options. This is particularly useful to consider if you don’t have a lot of money to spend on health insurance. More details! 

Premiums Must Be Paid by You

Cobra health insurance isn’t the cheapest health insurance plan. In fact, you must pay 100% of the premiums and a small fee for administration. This is a major drawback of COBRA because it can be an expensive option to look into.

You May Qualify for COBRA If You Receive Disability from the SSA

If you qualify for disability benefits, it’s likely you can receive up to twenty-plus months of COBRA care. However, SSA are the ones to determine if you’re disabled and eligible for COBRA. Cobra health insurance can help a lot of people, but it isn’t without drawbacks, nonetheless.

COBRA Laws Can Vary from State

While there is a federal law at play with COBRA, there are mini laws in each state. That does sound a bit confusing, however, it’s important to understand these laws in your state. For instance, group plans can remain in place for companies with fewer than twenty employees. Cobra health insurance is a little more complex at times, so it’s best to know the latest rules in your area.

Your Rights Remain the Same

A lot of people believe since they have Cobra health insurance, their rights change. However, that is not entirely true. You actually have the same insurance rights as you would have with your former employee health insurance. That does cause a lot of confusion, so it’s good to know these rights remain the same.

The Coverage Period Begins on the Last Day of Your Employment, Even If You Register Late

You have a period of sixty-days to decide if you wish to use COBRA. Regardless of if you chose to enrol in the program on day one or day fifty-nine, your coverage starts immediately. That is useful and something most people don’t realize. However, some wait to enrol into Cobra health insurance as they think it’ll prolong their coverage; it does not.

Know What COBRA Has to Offer

COBRA confused a lot of people. There are a lot of complicated matters surrounding this health insurance coverage, but you can strip it back and find out the most important points. However, it’s important to learn all you can about COBRA so that you can be sure it’s suitable for you. Cobra health insurance does have many positives, so think carefully if it’s right for you. Click here for more information: https://www.mrteegolf.com/how-much-do-cobra-and-cobra-alternatives-cost/

WHAT ARE THE BEST COBRA INSURANCE ALTERNATIVES

With the inception of the pandemic came a whole lot of negative side effects. While few would say they benefitted from it, others beg to differ. The economy of the country experienced a sort of meltdown thereby affecting businesses. This has led to so many employees being laid off their jobs.

Job loss comes with loss of several benefits associated with the lost job. One of such benefits is a health care insurance plan. Now, COBRA health insurance is almost always the way to go. Although COBRA is efficient in itself, it comes at a high cost. What then happens when you cannot afford it?

Well, the answer is not far-fetched as there are several other affordable COBRA alternatives that will suit your needs. Some of these alternatives are given ample explanation below.

Short-term health insurance

This is the first alternative on our list because it can be easily gotten. This option is open to all citizens of the United States. It allows you to fill in the gap between your present insurance plan and that of your new employer.

Within 30 seconds,you can apply and get approved for any plan of your choice. The benefits attached to any plans you settle for begins 24hrs after it is approved. Thereis no time frame or enrollment period with short-term health insurance. Learn more about short-term insurance.

Short-term plans are more affordable than COBRA, but do not cover most of the robust cases it covers. This plan will also cater for your health nerds for only oneyear depending on your state.

WHAT ARE THE BEST COBRA INSURANCE ALTERNATIVES

ACA health insurance

ACA is an acronym for affordable care act. It was signed into law in 2010 by the Obama administration. That is why it is also called OBAMACARE.

This is the best alternative in case you are seeking a more comprehensible insurance coverage. With this plan, you become eligible by applying through the Marketplace of your state. In this Marketplace, you get to enroll and buy health plans that is established by your state or federal government.

All citizens of the United States are eligible for this plan. To qualify as s citizen, your income must be between 100-400% of the poverty line.  The prices are not cut-throat, as you get to pick the one that you can most likely afford.

Independent health insurance

If you want a better plan than the short-term plan, independent health insurance is the way to go. This alternative is the best incases where your income is not qualified for ACA premium plans.

Independent health insurance is usually purchased from private insurance establishment that are not affiliated with the ACA. These plans are not Marketplace Plans and does not qualify you for premium packages. What you stand to gain is that It is relatively inexpensive and keeps you from paying for COBRA premium. Click here for more about Independent private health insurance.

Professional group plan

There are healthcare plans with low premium rates and this is one of them. The plans are available throughnational organizations that provide benefits for private business owners.

These organizations includes Nationsl Association of the Self-Employed (NASE)and freelancers union.  While NASE has paid membership of $120, freelance union offers free membership.

In conclusion, you do not decide just yet. You can still decide to continue using COBRA.If not you can goahead and purchase one of the alternatives that best suits you and your family.

LEAVING YOUR JOB? FIVE QUESTIONS YOU SHOULD ASK ABOUT COBRA BENEFITS

There are so many personal losses incurred from being laid off from work. Apart from the strains on your financial health, there are other benefits you lose. These benefits are benefits offered to you by your employers because you are their employee. Hence, losing your job strips you of such benefits.

One of such benefits is a group health plan or an employer-sponsored health plan. In a bid to assist individuals in this category, the government set up the COBRA health insurance. It was created in 1985 to cater for the health insurance of both the employed, retirees, and laid-off employees.

As good as it may sound, individuals must be aware of some things about COBRA before subscribing to it. Here, we ask and answer five of such questions to enlighten you on COBRA health insurance. Click here for COBRA alternative costs.

What is the cost of COBRA health insurance?

COBRA is quite expensive because it covers 100% of the costs of your health plan. Some employers cater for the health plan of their employees. They pay a large sum of their employee’s premium health plan and deduct the remainder from their salary.

Usually, employers are responsible for 90% of the premium individual coverage and 30% for family coverage. Well,  you can avoid all of these cost with COBRA. Because COBRA caters for 100% of your premium health plan, only that it costs 5 time higher than your salary deduction.

LEAVING YOUR JOB? FIVE QUESTIONS YOU SHOULD ASK ABOUT COBRA BENEFITS

What is the deadline for COBRA enrollment?

The deadline depends on your position. Employers and employees have different enrollment period and duration.

  • Employer: After losing your job, your employer has 44 days to deliver COBRA information. Also, if your group plan insurance coverage expires, your employer has the same 44 days to send out COBRA information. To be on the safe side, employees should keep checking in with their benefits manager after theyleave.
  • Employee: All employeesthat are eligible for COBRA have 60 days to register for it or any other planafter their benefits is over. Late enrollment does not help you save cost. COBRA policy insists that you still pay your premiums for the period inwhich you were not registered.

Note: COBRA in no waychangesthe benefits you had with your group plan. Rather itkeeps the exact benefits intact. Even if you might want to make changes, you would have to wait till the next enrollment period.

What is the coverage period for COBRA?

One thing youneed to know is that, COBRA is not permanent. It covers you for 2-3 years or even more depending on the state youare in. 

However, within this period of enjoying COBRA benefits, you are advised to find another plan. Learn more about COBRA continuation coverage.

Are there other alternatives asides COBRA after leaving my job?

Fortunately, there are several other alternatives to COBRA after leaving your job. Some of these alternatives includes partners employer-sponsored plan, health insurance market place at health.gov, professional group plan, and so on.

What makes me eligible for COBRA health insurance? If the company you work for has more than 20 employees, then you might be eligible for COBRA health insurance. Also, as an employee you must be under your employer’s group health plan.