How does the new COBRA rules affect State "mini" COBRA?

By Ric Joyner

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Question from agent:

Ric,
I have a question about the COBRA subsidy, here in FL we have “mini COBRA” for groups under 20 lives. I read somewhere that this is only for Federal COBRA, but then I read the paragraph on your blog that leads me to believe different. It states that it is for groups with less than 20 ee’s “provided that such State law mandates require an employer or other entity to offer comparable continuation of coverage.”
So, does that mean that it would apply to less than 20 ee’s and if so, who will pay the subsidy, the carriers who administer the “mini COBRA”?
Just wondering if you can help me with this question.
Thanks,

Answer from Mark Stember, JD, Kilpatrick Stockton:

Ric-

It’s very clear that similar state continuation laws are subject to the subsidy.  The person to whom the premiums are paid by the participant then would receive the credit.  In the state continuation realm, this usually is the insurer, and so the insurer would get the credit and would be responsible revising its notices and procedures accordingly.

Mark

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