Effective July 1, 2012

COBRA provides for continued coverage under insurance plans for defined periods of time in certain situations.  Cornell College abides by COBRA regulations for all eligible participants.  For detailed information regarding COBRA and COBRA rights please access the Department of Labor’s website at http://www.dol.gov/ebsa/pdf/cobraemployee.pdf.

In general, coverage under COBRA can be continued for the following periods of time:

 

Qualifying Event

 

Qualified Beneficiaries

Maximum Period of Coverage through COBRA

Termination (for reasons other than gross misconduct) or reduction in hours of employment

Employee

Spouse/Partner

Dependent Child

 

 

18 months*

 

Employee enrollment in Medicare

Spouse/Partner

Dependent Child

 

36 months

 

Divorce or legal separation

Spouse/Partner

Dependent Child

 

36 months

 

Death of employee

Spouse

Dependent Child

 

36 months

Loss of “dependent child” status under the plan

 

Dependent Child

 

36 months

*In certain circumstances, qualified beneficiaries entitled to 18 months of continuation coverage may become entitled to a disability extension of an additional 11 months (for a total of 29 months) or an extension of an additional 18 months due to the occurrence of a second qualifying event (for a total maximum of 36 months).  Further information can be found at the Department of Labor’s website referenced above.

Cornell acknowledges the legal right to assess a fee equal to 102% of actual premium for those electing COBRA through the 18 or 36 month continuation period, as well as a fee equal to 150% of actual premium through the 11 month disability extension period.

Cornell College has elected to provide a discounted premium rate under the following guidelines:

Eligibility:  Cornell College employees with a minimum of five (5) years of continuous service, receiving benefits under the group long-term disability plan and not eligible for group health plan coverage through a parent/spouse/partner’s employer. 

Health Insurance Coverage:  Will be equal to the level of coverage (single, employee + one, or family) at the time of application for long-term disability benefits.

Disability Benefit:  During the initial twelve (12) months of COBRA coverage, Cornell College will charge a reduced COBRA premium for those eligible employees electing COBRA due to the eligible employee’s disability, and receiving benefits under the group long-term disability plan.  Instead of charging 102% of premium, during the initial twelve (12) months Cornell will charge employee premium rates.  During months thirteen (13) through twenty-nine (29) of continued coverage through COBRA due to a disability, Cornell will charge 102% of premium, versus the allowed 150% of actual premium.  All other COBRA rules will apply.  The reduced COBRA premium will apply to COBRA premiums attributable to the eligible employee’s spouse/partner and/or dependents provided the eligible employee has elected and is receiving COBRA coverage and the spouse/partner/dependents are not otherwise eligible for other group health plan coverage through the spouse/partner or dependent’s employer. 

Continuation:  This benefit will run concurrent with COBRA and benefits will not exceed the COBRA extension period.  Should the participant who is the eligible employee die during the initial twelve (12) month period, spousal/partner and dependent continued coverage under COBRA will be at employee premium rates for the duration of the initial twelve month time period, then at full COBRA rates (102%). 

Cornell College reserves the right to amend or terminate this COBRA premium rate subsidy benefit at any time for any reason.  This policy shall be interpreted in the sole discretion of Cornell College.

Questions should be directed to the Human Resources department at x4243 or 319-895-4243.