Losing that job you’ve depended on for years to make a living feels more painful than a punch on your face. Sad enough, you lose the employer’s health insurance. Well, life has to move on.
If you’ve probably received a notification from your employer that you qualify for Cobra insurance, then some questions will swirl your head:
What is Cobra Health Insurance? Do I need it?
So, what is Cobra Health Insurance? On a light note, Cobra has nothing to do with snakes. It is a health insurance coverage founded under the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act to help you keep your original health plan temporary for a period of up to 18 months.
During this time, you and you’re family get health coverage. However, you must qualify to enjoy the benefits that come along. If you lost the job, you’re working on reduced hours, or they fired you, then you are eligible for continuous coverage. All this happens except for committing a crime.
If your spouse and kids are in a group health plan, you also qualify. If it’s you alone, then you don’t qualify. The spouse and children in your Cobra plan with continue to benefit even when you pass on, get a divorce, your kid turn 26, or when you opt for Medicare.
Every institution with over 20 employees, qualify for Cobra. It doesn’t matter whether you work in a big company or a small institution, provided your group qualifies, then you’ll enjoy continuous coverage.
When it comes to cost, you’re likely to feel a cobra bite in your wallet. We are used to feeling good when employees pay our insurance, not knowing how deep they dig their pockets. You pay the total premium your employee used to pay and an administration charge of 2%.
Another critical thing to know about Cobra is that you have 60 days to decide whether you need the continuation. Use the time to weigh options because once that period erupts, you’ll not have another chance to sign up for Cobra, even under exceptional circumstances.
While the average temporary period is 18 months, Cobra coverage allows for an extension of 29 to 36 months, but only under particular circumstances. Note that you have to pay premiums on time, lateness leads to cancellation, but they allow for a 30 day grace period, after which you get reinstated.
Medical bills are among the causes of bankruptcy worldwide. Your status or beliefs doesn’t count when it comes to your health; you need an active health insurance every time. Now that you know what Cobra Health Insurance is, go ahead and consider the plan or its alternatives.