Generally, employers determine who is eligible for benefits under their health plans and are responsible for COBRA. In administering plans, ConnectiCare often relies on employers’ eligibility determinations as to who is an employee with benefits.
For fully-insured plans, the requirement that employees work full time (or part time if allowed by their employer) will be relaxed during the public emergency. In addition, during this time period, rules will also be relaxed if there is a provision in the employer’s policy about a reduction in or elimination of work hours affecting eligibility as long as employment has not been terminated. This relaxation applies to enrollees who, immediately before the date they were furloughed or had a reduction of hours, were working at the employer’s premises and can no longer work due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
In all cases, employers must continue to send premium payments to ConnectiCare for all covered persons for ConnectiCare to continue coverage. Coverage must be offered on a uniform, non-discriminatory basis to all employees, and employee premium contributions must be the same or less prior to the furlough.
For self-funded plans administered by ConnectiCare, payment of administrative fees, claims costs and stop-loss premium is required to continue our administration of benefits for employees who have been furloughed or subject to reduction in or elimination of hours but not terminated.
As of May 4, 2020, the COBRA election period was extended to 60 days from the end of the outbreak period (see more on the “outbreak period” below) instead of post 60 days from receiving a COBRA notice. See more information in the ”COBRA extension” section below.