EBSA Adds COBRA Subsidy Extension Materials

January 11, 2010 (PLANSPONSOR.com) – The U.S. Department of Labor’s Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) has added new guidance material to its Web site designed to help explain the eligibility requirements of a federal health coverage premium subsidy.

An EBSA news release said the extension of the health premium subsidy under the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA) was contained in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA), as amended. The president recently signed a measure extending the subsidy COBRA Subsidy Extension Passed.

Eligible individuals pay only 35% of their COBRA premiums and the remaining 65% is reimbursed to the coverage provider through a tax credit. The premium reduction applies to periods of health coverage that began on or after February 17, 2009, and lasts for up to 15 months.

To qualify, individuals must experience a COBRA-qualifying event that is the involuntary termination of a covered employee’s employment. The involuntary termination must occur during the period from September 1, 2008, to February 28, 2010.

New FAQs, fact sheet and other material are available on EBSA’s Web site at http://www.dol.gov/ebsa/COBRA.html.