Senate Passes Another COBRA Subsidy Extension Bill

March 16, 2010 - by: HR Hero 6 COMMENTS

Last week, the U.S. Senate passed legislation that would further extend the federal COBRA subsidy created by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. The American Workers, State, and Business Relief Act of 2010 (H.R. 4213), which passed the Senate by a 62-36 vote, would extend the subsidy to individuals who were involuntarily terminated through December 31, 2010.

The new legislation is a follow-up to the Temporary Extension Act of 2010 (H.R. 4691), which President Barack Obama signed into law at the beginning of March. This previous legislation extended the federal COBRA subsidy to individuals who are involuntarily terminated between March 1, 2010, and March 31, 2010.

Similar to the Temporary Extension Act of 2010, the new legislation would also allow certain individuals who initially lost group health coverage because of a reduction in hours and were then terminated after the legislation was enacted to receive the subsidy.

Either the U.S. House of Representatives will have to take up the Senate bill or members of both houses will have to meet to work out a compromise regarding the legislation. We will continue to keep you updated on the bill’s status.

Also, you can keep up with the latest legal changes affecting employer benefits and trends in employee benefits with the Benefits Complete Compliance

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1 Diana
22:11:47, 18/03/10

Will the COBRA extension be extended for people that have been terminated in August 2009? What is the total months a COBRA participant can receive COBRA through their former employer receiving a tax deduction? Thank you

2 Sal Saraceni
08:19:35, 19/03/10

My daughter was on my family retirement plan with Citibank.As of Jan.1st she turned 26 and no longer eligible.Why can’t she get assistance on cobra from gov’t which she is eligible for but rate is unaffordable at $750 per month for newly graduated student looking for a teaching job.We live in the state of Florida insurance plan from Aetna was originated in N.Y.

3 D Sobenes
15:01:35, 24/03/10

Diana: ARRA was signed into law on February 17, 2009 which gave Assistance Eligible Individuals the right to pay a reduced COBRA premium for periods of coverage beginning on or after Feb. 17, 2009 so long as their employment was involuntarily terminated beginning 09/01/09 through 12/31/09.

This legislation has been extended several times so as to both extend the length of time the government would subsidize COBRA premiums as well as to cover individuals who continue to be involuntarily terminated, thus losing coverage. Therefore, ARRA will reduce COBRA premiums for up to 15 months (unless legislation is passed extending this) through the end of December 2010; note that most people are eligible to continue COBRA for up to 18-months, that has not changed.

4 D Sobenes
15:07:34, 24/03/10

Correction: first paragraph, termination start date is 09/01/2008 not 09/01/2009.

5 heather
03:42:16, 08/04/10

I have been on cobra since June 1 2008 and the ARRA subsidy has been extended from 9 to 15 months. But how about the time one can opt for the cobra insurance? Is there any talk of changing the COBRA basic 18 month eligibility to 24 months or longer? without a disability qualifying event and charging 150% of the original plan monthly costs?

6 Suante
16:13:51, 08/10/10

Am I reading the above article correct. I was laid off of my job of 12 years July 31,2010 do I qualify for the 65% for cobra

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