- Employees who are involuntarily terminated on or before February 28, 2010 are eligible to apply for the premium subsidy. This represents a two-month extension of the eligibility cutoff date for the premium subsidy.
- The premium subsidy is now available for up to 15 months for anyone who was involuntarily terminated at any time from February 17, 2009 to February 28, 2010. This represents a six-month extension of the premium subsidy.
Effective immediately, the 65 percent COBRA premium subsidy, that took effect on February 17, 2009 and was scheduled to phase out by no later than September 30, 2010, has been extended by six months. Also extended is the cutoff date for involuntary terminations that are eligible for premium subsidies, which is now February 28, 2010. When an employee separates from employment, generally employers that are subject to COBRA must offer the terminated employee, and any family members who are covered by the group health plan, the opportunity to purchase insurance continuation coverage at the employee’s expense, generally for up to 18 months after employment separation. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) eased this financial burden by providing a financial subsidy to any involuntarily terminated employee and his dependents consisting of 65 percent of the cost of COBRA premiums for up to nine months. On December 19, 2009 the President signed into law the Department of Defense Appropriations Act of 2010 (DODA 2010), which amends ARRA and COBRA in two major respects: