Tag: premium assistance

$1.3M Settlement in COBRA/ARRA Class Action Now Final

On April 23, a federal district court in Alabama gave final approval to a settlement agreement under which an employer and plan administrator will pay $1.3 million to a group of former employees who alleged they never received COBRA election or premium subsidy information after their involuntary termination of employment.  The case is Hornsby v. […]

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Court OKs $1.3M Settlement in COBRA/ARRA Class Action

Although it admitted no wrongdoing, an employer and plan administrator agreed to pay a $1.3 million settlement to a group of former employees who alleged they never received COBRA election or premium subsidy information after their involuntary termination of employment in 2010. In addition to COBRA and premium subsidy notice claims, they also sued the […]

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COBRA and ARRA Rules Misread in Slapping Employer with $500 Notice Penalty

Here’s one positive pattern in COBRA coverage lawsuits: Even if a plan administrator violated the COBRA law, if it acts reasonably under the circumstances, courts are inclined to mitigate the amount of any penalties. But even though the law is more than 25 years old, case law shows there’s still a learning curve about its […]

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DOL Survey to Analyze COBRA Premium Subsidy Up-take

To fill in the knowledge gaps on how many individuals enrolled in the COBRA premium subsidy program — data that will be helpful in determining the program’s cost-effectiveness, who best benefited from the subsidy and how to target similar programs — the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) plans to sponsor a study sometime in 2012. […]

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COBRA’s Top 10: Law Used as Poster Child for the Problems With Government Jargon

It’s no surprise to most health plan administrators that the federal law on COBRA continuation coverage was used in a recent newspaper article as an example of “bureaucratic legalese.” In recounting efforts to push the “government to speak plainly,” the Dec. 2 Washington Post article said: If you want to understand Americans’ frustration with Washington, […]

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Premium Subsidy Extension Becomes Law

Trade legislation that also extends premium subsidies for health coverage under the Health Care Tax Credit (HCTC) program was signed into law by President Obama Oct. 21. The HCTC was enacted as part of the Trade Act of 2002. As originally enacted, it provided a 65-percent tax credit for qualifying health coverage (including COBRA continuation […]

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Premium Subsidy Extension Passes Congress

A bill that would extend premium subsidies for health coverage under the Health Care Tax Credit (HCTC) program has been passed by both the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate, meaning it’s on the way to President Obama’s desk. The HCTC was enacted as part of the Trade Act of 2002. As originally enacted, it […]

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DOL Clarifies End of COBRA Premium Subsidy Period

Keep in mind that some individuals may be eligible for COBRA premium subsidies beyond Aug. 31, 2011, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) noted today in updated material on its website. The updated frequently-asked-question on the end of the subsidy period follows: Q1: I’ve heard that the COBRA Premium Reduction (Subsidy) ends on August 31, 2011, […]

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Resuscitate COBRA Premium Subsidies to Help Unemployed, Commonwealth Fund Says

In the waning days of the COBRA premium subsidy, The Commonwealth Fund is calling for the program to be resuscitated as a way to help unemployed and uninsured workers until health care reform is fully implemented. In an Aug. 24 issue brief,  the Fund noted that “the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression has […]

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Health Coverage Premium Subsidies: One Step Closer to Extension?

At least in the Senate, a consensus is being reached on trade adjustment assistance that could lead to an extension of premium subsidies under the Health Coverage Tax Credit (HCTC) program. Here are two snippets from a joint statement issued Wednesday: [Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.)]: “My staff and Senator McConnell’s staff have been […]

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