I forgot how much paperwork is involved with the benefits side of the transaction once you leave an employer. I’ve received at least one piece of benefits-related mail every day for the past two weeks – most of it continuation notices required by law.
The long awaited COBRA packet for our health insurance coverage arrived today – a month sooner than expected. Did my reaching out to plan reps in June and July speed up the process? I have no idea. Anyhow, I wasted no time in making my elections and paying the first premium payment. Hopefully, everything posts properly on Monday and we show coverage effective 9/1. My current coverage expires at the end of August.
Under COBRA, you have 60 days to decide whether or not you want to keep the health insurance coverage that you had with your former employer. Once your coverage as an active employee ends, you move to an inactive status with the insurance company. What this basically means is you have no insurance coverage until you fill out the election form and pay the required premiums. Your insurance is then reinstated retroactively. It can be a real hassle if you need care during the COBRA election period because you are essentially a self-pay patient until the insurance is turned back on. You can get reimbursed after the fact, but I sought to avoid this hassle, if at all possible. COBRA continuation coverage was our only option because hubby requires specialty care and MD Anderson does not accept ACA insurance plans. Assuming all systems are go on Monday, I’ll be scheduling the remaining medical appointments on my list.
What a difference a year makes! Exactly one year ago, I began the master to-do list so hubby could begin his escape from corporate life. Little did we know I would also be joining him! COBRA continuation coverage is one key piece of the puzzle that made this whole thing possible. I am so grateful for it.