If you lose your eligibility for MIT health, dental, or vision coverage, the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1985 (COBRA) gives you the option of continuing your coverage for a limited period of time.
Under COBRA, MIT must notify you in writing if you are no longer eligible for your existing MIT health, dental, or vision plan coverage. Within 60 days of this notification or within 60 days of your loss of coverage (whichever is later), you have the option of continuing coverage at a higher cost for a limited period of time. COBRA is a transition solution to cover you until you enroll in a new health plan.
HealthEquity (formerly WageWorks) administers the program for MIT. MIT does not contribute to the cost of your coverage under COBRA.
Who is eligible
You are eligible for COBRA coverage if you have lost your MIT health, dental, or vision plan coverage because of
- termination of MIT employment
- reduction in MIT work hours to ineligible status
- layoff from MIT
- change in MIT employment to ineligible job category
- death of spouse or domestic partner
- change in child's eligibility because of age, marriage, employment, service in the armed forces, or other disqualifying event
Who and what COBRA covers
In keeping with federal law, the MIT COBRA Plan gives each individual covered under an MIT health, dental or vision plan an independent right to continue the same coverage they were enrolled in before they lost eligibility. COBRA coverage is subject to all the same deductibles, exclusions, limitations, and other provisions as the terminated coverage.
When COBRA coverage begins and ends
To receive COBRA coverage, you must enroll within 60 days of receiving written notice from the MIT COBRA Plan administrator, HealthEquity, that you are no longer eligible for your existing MIT health, dental or vision plan or within 60 days of losing your coverage, whichever is later.
COBRA coverage begins only when the COBRA plan administrator receives the first required premium payment. Any delay in the payment of the initial premium may result in
- a lapse in coverage between the date on which you lose your MIT coverage and the date on which the initial payment for COBRA coverage is received
- a termination of COBRA eligibility if the initial payment is not received within 45 days of the signing of the COBRA Election Form
For most eligible individuals, COBRA coverage ends 18 months after the date on which existing MIT health, dental, or vision plan coverage is lost. You or individuals covered under your MIT plan may qualify for a longer period of COBRA coverage under the following conditions:
- If you find yourself without coverage because of divorce, separation, or the death of a spouse or domestic partner, you are eligible for 36 months of COBRA coverage.
- Dependent children who lose eligibility because of age, marriage, employment, service in the armed forces, or other disqualifying events are eligible for 36 months of COBRA coverage.
COBRA Enrollment and Payments
You enroll in the COBRA plan by returning the Election Form mailed to you by the MIT COBRA Plan administrator, HealthEquity. Your first payment is due within 45 days of signing this form. The amount of your first payment must cover the cost of all the months that have elapsed between the end of your MIT health, dental or vision plan coverage and the date you sign the Election Form. Be sure to contact HealthEquity to confirm the exact cost of your COBRA coverage.
- When you enroll in the COBRA plan, the MIT COBRA Plan administrator will mail you a supply of monthly payment coupons.
- Your first payment is due within 45 days of the signing of your COBRA Election Form.
- Each subsequent payment is due on the first day of the month for the coming month's coverage.
- If the MIT COBRA Plan administrator does not receive your monthly payment within 30 days after the due date on the coupon, your COBRA coverage will be terminated and will not be reinstated.
In most cases, the monthly cost of your COBRA coverage will be 102% of the full cost of your MIT health, dental, or vision plan.