COBRA Subsidy Extension Passed

December 21, 2009 ( – The president has signed a measure approved by the U.S. Senate over the weekend that extends displaced workers’ COBRA health care subsidies from nine months to 15 months.

The bill, passed last week in the U.S. House (see House Lawmakers Approve COBRA Subsidy Extension), also extends the eligibility for the subsidy to workers who lose their jobs before February 28, 2010.

“Individuals who had reached the end of the reduced premium period before the legislation extended it to 15 months will have additional time to pay the reduced premiums related to the extension,” said Assistant Secretary of Labor Phyllis C. Borzi, head of the departments’ Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA), in a statement.  To continue their coverage they must pay the 35% of premium costs by (60 days after date of enactment) or, if later, 30 days after notice of the extension is provided by their plan administrator.

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