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When Will I Get My COBRA Election Notice?

Someone told me that if I quit my job and my employer doesn’t give me a notice saying I can receive COBRA then they would have to pay for medical expenses that I have acquired since then. Is this true?

Employer Has 45 Days To Offer You COBRA

The employer who provides group health insurance has up to 45 days from the last day of coverage to send you a COBRA election notice to enroll back into the same plan. This enrollment notice may come directly from the employer or a third-party administrator they may use to manage health insurance continuation.

COBRA Election Notice Instructions

In general, the COBRA election notice informs you on who will now manage your coverage, how to enroll, the premium costs, where to pay and how long the plan is available to you.

The process for obtaining COBRA may be done by hand directly through an employer or online account set up by a third-party administrator.

Employer Penalties

If the employer does not comply with COBRA you can call the Department of Labor at 1-866-487-2365. The DOL may impose fines on companies who do not provide continuation of health insurance per the COBRA law.

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If I Have Not Received Any Information Yet, Does It Mean I Am Not Covered?

If I have not received any information yet, does that mean I am not covered? Will there be a lapse in coverage?

You Are Not Yet Covered Under COBRA Until You Make Your Premium Payment

No. Your employer legally has up to 45 days to get to you the information you need to elect COBRA. If you need to seek medical treatment within the time period it takes for you to get information from your employer and the time you sign up and make your payment, you may have to be reimbursed for your treatment. As soon as you sign up for COBRA insurance, (before the deadline) and make your premium payment, your insurance coverage is then retroactively set to the last day you had your health plan. There will be no lapse in coverage.

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Except When Employer Has Fewer Than 19 Workers

A business that employs 19 or fewer workers does not have to comply with the federal COBRA law. Some states have laws that require these small businesses to offer health insurance continuation. The deadline to provide notice to continue the work health plan is handled differently per state.

COBRA Eligibility

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COBRA Third-Party Administrators

Your COBRA plan may be managed by a third-party administrator. Many employers work with the following:

If you are unsure who your plan administrator is, reach out to the human resources department of the company that provided the health insurance you had.

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