H&W: Updated Model COBRA Election Notice

cobra election noticeCOBRA Election Notice: The Department of Labor (DOL) recently issued an updated model notice for the Election Notice under COBRA.

A group health plan must provide qualified beneficiaries with an election notice, which describes their rights to continuation coverage and how to make an election. The election notice must be provided to qualified beneficiaries within 14 days after the plan administrator receives the notice of a qualifying event.

Some qualified beneficiaries may want to consider and compare health coverage alternatives to COBRA that are available through the Marketplace (referred to as the Exchange in the ACA). Qualified beneficiaries may also be eligible for a premium tax credit (a tax credit to help pay for some or all of the cost of coverage in plans offered through the Marketplace).

The model election notice was revised to help make qualified beneficiaries aware of other coverage options available in the Marketplace. As with the earlier model, in order to use this model election notice properly, the plan administrator must complete it by filling in the blanks with the appropriate plan information. Use of the model election notice, appropriately completed, will be considered by the Department of Labor to be good faith compliance with the election notice content requirements of COBRA.

See the COBRA Notices compliance activity on Compliancedashboard for more information on the notices required by COBRA (a Compliancedashboard login will be required to access this information)

See below for links to the new DOL guidance and models:

Guidance (Technical Release 2013-02)

COBRA Model Election Notice

COBRA Model Election Notice redline version (to show May 2013 changes)

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