The Wording of Your COBRA Documents May Be More Important Than You Think

While sending Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA) election notices to qualified beneficiaries may seem pretty straightforward, it is important to make sure that the information is clear and can be easily understood by the plan participant. Otherwise, your company may find themselves in the middle of a lawsuit, such as the one faced by Cushman & Wakefield, Inc.

Earlier this year, Cushman & Wakefield terminated an employee and provided him with a COBRA election notice, as they were required to do. The employee, Luis, filed a class-action lawsuit because the election notice was unclear on when exactly the coverage would end and where to send the premium payments.

Cushman & Wakefield’s election notice did not include a specific date for the end of coverage. Luis was unsure whether he would lose coverage at the beginning or the end of the 18th month, of if the end date was exactly 18 months after he received the notice.

It also did not provide an address to which he needed to send his payments. Instead, the notice merely stated that more information about payment would be provided upon completion of the election form.

Sheakley can help your company with every aspect of COBRA Administration, including sending and managing all of the paperwork. We make sure that every notice sent out has all of the pertinent information that the plan participant would need. Our COBRA team members are experts and can manage these tasks so you won’t ever have to worry about keeping up. Learn more about our COBRA administration here.

By | 2017-12-07T08:20:10+00:00 November 10th, 2017|Blog, Industry Insights|0 Comments