Saturday, January 05, 2008

Protect Yourself After Termination, Get Cobra Insurance:

By John Dale

1986 came as a beneficial year for employees, since this year the employees saw the Consolidation Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act being turned into a law. This law states that the employees had the right to the health related benefits offered by the company even in case they are no longer employed by the company. This law is known as the COBRA insurance in most of the companies.

A health insurance plan does not come at a low cost. Rather it is not only expensive but also tiring job. First you will need to fill an application form and wait for it to be processed and even after that you will have to go through the first step once again. The first step involves completing the pre-existing conditions, medical coverage and other such things. According to COBRA insurance you are entitled to take advantage of the health policy even though you are no longer working with the company.

A slight catch in this policy is that you will have to pay a slightly higher premium if you have left the company after getting the group policy. However, the upside is that the premium you need to pay in this case is still much lower then getting an entirely new policy. Thus if you have to pay the share of the premium that your previous company was paying originally, making you pay higher premium then before, still you will be paying a lot lesser then getting a new health insurance.

One of the biggest advantages of COBRA health insurance is that it allows you to retain the rights to your medical history. If you have signed up for any pre-existing condition you can continue being covered by it. If any condition has been recently afflicted then it will be covered. However, if you signup for a new insurance policy then this will not be the case. All the previous conditions will be filed as pre-existing conditions and the new insurance policy will not cover it.

Before completely leaving your company or employer, make sure that you have all the data that you will need to continue your health insurance by way of COBRA. Ask the personnel head and any other people who are privy to the details of the group policy for the things that you need to know in order to take full advantage of the chance offered by a COBRA insurance. There will definitely be changes and adjustments to the policy and usually, it is advisable to comply with all the necessary requisites and complete all the paperwork that need to be done in order for your COBRA insurance to be updated.

Usually, company-sponsored medical and other insurance packages are paid annually and are therefore effective for one full year. In normal circumstances, the alteration of the policy is not allowed and considered legit. Any changes or modifications to the insurance policy may only be implemented for life-changing events such as an employment termination, marriage, death of a spouse, giving birth or a divorce.

Because an employment termination is considered a legal ground for modifying an insurance policy within its enrollment period, you can make your desired changes to your policy as soon as possible. You can either upgrade or downgrade your insurance package, add or remove dependents and many others.

COBRA insurance gives you all the assurance that if you are out of employment even then you can avail the COBRA health insurance policy. You can avail and enjoy the benefits of the policy and for this all you have to do is to pay the share of the premium that your previous company was paying.

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