Jump to content

Does anybody know much about COBRA insurance?


Recommended Posts

For those of you who live in the US, have any of you elected to choose COBRA coverage, if you were laid off from your job, just so you could have consistent, continuing health coverage, which is VERY important when it comes to pre-existing condition clauses? This is important esp when you get a new job because the health insurance may NOT cover your pre-existing conditions (if you did NOT have continuous health coverage).

 

I know with COBRA, you pay your and the employer's portion of the health insurance payment and it is retroactive. I also know that one has 60 days to choose it after one's insurance is terminated.

 

Do you think it is the most effective way to get insurance? or if you find a job through a temp agency, and the agency offers insurance, to get it through there (although coverage may be poor).

 

Just curious.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ren,

 

When, if ever, they lay you off file for MediCal at the same time you file for EDD. Here in Cali an insurer has to grant you insurance under a work sponsored health care plan. That's what I discovered as I shopped for plans for my employees and I; thereforee, don't worry about future employer coverage. Just use the current Cali public system or the free clinic systemfor now until a good job comes along.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ren,

 

When, if ever, they lay you off file for MediCal at the same time you file for EDD. Here in Cali an insurer has to grant you insurance under a work sponsored health care plan. That's what I discovered as I shopped for plans for my employees and I; thereforee, don't worry about future employer coverage. Just use the current Cali public system or the free clinic systemfor now until a good job comes along.

 

Do you know much about Medi-Cal and what the qualifications would be? I do have pre-existing conditions.

 

Also, what do you mean that "an insurer has to grant you insurance under a work sponsored health care plan"?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

When you switch to COBRA, as long as you start paying for it in that 2 month period and do not miss a payment, it is just a continuation of your insurance and pre-existing conditions are not an issue. They can't deny you COBRA for any reason as long as you pay on time.

 

It also extends you HIPAA cover while you carry it, which means that if at the end of 18 months you convert to a new policy with another carrier, your pre-existing conditions may not apply (check the insurance laws in your state).

 

But if you refuse COBRA, go with someone else who is not a group insurer (thru a company) then you might lose you HIPAA priviliges and might have to wait for pre-existing conditions.

 

So before you make a decision to refuse COBRA, read the conditions very carefully for the new policy you want to buy.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Do you know much about Medi-Cal and what the qualifications would be? I do have pre-existing conditions.

 

Also, what do you mean that "an insurer has to grant you insurance under a work sponsored health care plan"?

 

I'd suggest you visit MediCal's website for detailed plan information.

 

What I mean is that as an employer the insurance company covers all employees working the the employer no matter what pre-existing condition an employee has. The insure cannot pick out the ones it wants or rejects; thereforee, the insurer has to take or reject the company as a whole.

 

As for individule plans, the insure can reject you for pre-existing conditions. That's why Obama wants to reform current individule's healthcare laws.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It is extremely expensive. So expensive that when i left one job to go to another, i opted to just do without insurance for those three months while waiting for the new to take affect.

 

That might not be an option for everyone if they have a lot of medical bills, so you would just have to research to see if the cobra payments are more than what you would pay for the doctor visits and meds if you have them regularly and they can't wait a few months.

 

Most company insurance plans that i know of will pick up pre-existing conditions in these cases. For instnace i have endometriosis, but it hasn't bothered me for a long time but i had surgery ovre it years ago. Even tho it is pre-existing, my new insurance still covers treatment for it if i need it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

With the stuff I bolded, does that mean going with insurance policies not provided through work?

 

Right now, if I should lose my job, it seems COBRA is the best way to go since it would keep the current insurance. I need to look more into Medi-Cal before I would choose that.

 

Also, with COBRA, do you pay for the insurance, right when you elect to choose it, or do you have like a 30 day window to pay for it.

 

For those of you who chose COBRA, did it work out for you? Or were the payments too high to swallow?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It is extremely expensive. So expensive that when i left one job to go to another, i opted to just do without insurance for those three months while waiting for the new to take affect.

 

That might not be an option for everyone if they have a lot of medical bills, so you would just have to research to see if the cobra payments are more than what you would pay for the doctor visits and meds if you have them regularly and they can't wait a few months.

 

Most company insurance plans that i know of will pick up pre-existing conditions in these cases. For instnace i have endometriosis, but it hasn't bothered me for a long time but i had surgery ovre it years ago. Even tho it is pre-existing, my new insurance still covers treatment for it if i need it.

 

JS, thanks for your insight into it. I don't go to the doctor for my asthma issues that much (maybe 1-2 times a year), but then I am on medications that control it. With my current insurance, I get refills about once every 3 months. My medications are expensive without insurance (one of them costs about $250 for 30 days supply). My asthma issues are my biggest worry since it is a condition I take meds for.

 

Thing is, in this economy, one doesn't know if one will find a job quickly if he/she loses their job. From what I read on here and in the news, it seems the job market really sucks right now.

 

I wish we could have good healthcare reform.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

With COBRA, i think you have until the end of the 60 day window to pay for the insurance, then you must catch up both months to keep it active. But you will be covered during that 60 day window. I think you are not billed until the end of the first 30 or 60 days.

 

But if you get to the end of the 60 days and have a new job, of course you wouldn't need to pay for the 60 days, unless you actually charged some medical care during those 60 days.

 

Your current employer should be able to provide you with detailed information on COBRA coverage, even if you haven't been laid off yet if you ask your HR dept.

 

I do know that if you try to buy private insurance on your own after refusing COBRA, they most likely will have pre-existing conditions, and depending on what your illness and medical history is, they may not accept you at all.

 

Some states have high risk pools that you can buy from if other insurance companies refuse you, but it depends on where you live.

 

I'd order the written plans or consult the websites to compare the benefits carefully before you decide what to do.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

×
×
  • Create New...