Here is a checklist to help make the COBRA notification process quick and easy:
Only employees who are participating in your health plan qualify for continued participation under the COBRA laws.
Who must be notified?
- New employees - provide them with an explanation of COBRA and how it might affect them
- Former employees
- Spouses and dependents of former employees - whether they are living with the ex-employee or living apart.
How and when should you notify them?
- You must notify former employees within 14 days after you receive the information of a COBRA-qualifying event
- The notification should be sent to the home address - if you hand it to them, you run the risk of not complying with spouse and dependent notification
- Send the notification by certified mail, return receipt or some other delivery method that provides you proof of delivery for your files
- Keep copies of any notifications you make - add the proof of delivery receipts to those copies
What are the COBRA-qualifying events that require notices?
- Employee leaves or is terminated for any reason
- Employee's hours are reduced or any other condition renders the employee ineligible for further participation in your health plan
- Employee dies
- Employee is divorced or legally separated
- Employee is eligible for Medicare
- Dependent child no longer qualifies as a dependent
- Retiree health benefits are lost because the company goes bankrupt
NOTE: Be sure that you or your health plan administrator properly notifies eligible COBRA beneficiaries of pending termination of their benefits.
As your HR consultants, we want your business to be in compliance with ALL relevant laws and regulations!