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New Mexico COBRA Insurance
If you found out you are not eligible for federal COBRA insurance, your COBRA options are not over in the state of New Mexico. Fortunately, the state has it's own COBRA insurance plan called New Mexico COBRA insurance. This plan was created by the state government to make sure that more people had the option to enroll in COBRA insurance if they chose to. With that said, it is important for anyone looking at New Mexico COBRA to also consider private health insurance options since NM COBRA is very short term and also very expensive. The New Mexico plan is also sometimes called Mini New Mexico COBRA insurance.
New Mexico COBRA Eligibility
The NM COBRA insurance plan is basically an extension of the federal COBRA insurance plan for people working at companies with between 2-19 employees and therefore wouldn't qualify for federal coverage. The other qualifying terms remain the same in NM to enroll in COBRA. They are:
- Qualifying Event: The covered employee lost, quit, or retired from their job. If the covered employee qualified for Medicare, died, or got divorced their spouse and dependents qualify for COBRA. Dependents can also qualify if they grow too old for coverage.
- Qualifying Beneficiary: The employee, their spouse, their dependents, and any new dependents are eligible for coverage.
- Qualified Plan: The plan must have covered between 2-19 employees and must still be active. The employee must have been on the plan for at least 3 months.
- You are not eligible for federal COBRA
Signing Up for NM COBRA Insurance
To sign up for COBRA coverage in New Mexico you must complete the election form you are given form your employer within the time period specified in the notice. If you have not received a notice and believe you should have you should contact your company or health insurance plan immediately. Once you complete the paperwork, it needs to be mailed in with a premium payment.
Cost and Coverage Length of New Mexico COBRA Coverage
Unlike federal COBRA that lasts for 18 months, New Mexico coverage only lasts for 6 months. It is a very temporary solution. In terms of cost, New Mexico COBRA costs the same amount as the federal plan at 102% of the complete premium. A complete premium is both what you paid for health insurance as well as what your employer paid. Due to this, most people see this cost raise between 50%-90% since employers pay for a large portion of health insurance costs.
Termination of New Mexico COBRA
Your NM COBRA plan will be terminated if you fail to pay the premium on time at any point. Additionally is can be terminated if you qualify for another insurance plan from an employer or the government. Finally it can be terminated if the employer plan ends for any reason.
Exploring Other Options for Medical Insurance
For many people COBRA insurance is simply out of reach with its high costs. Luckily there are other options through private health insurance plans. These plans offer much less expensive plans for individuals and families with a wide range of coverage. Most people save over 60% when they go with a private plan. To learn more about what private plans are out there, get a free quote below.
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New Mexico Frequently Asked Questions
Will New Mexico COBRA insurance cover my prescriptions?
New Mexico COBRA is just a continuation of your health plan so whatever was covered for prescriptions when you were working/covered will continue to be covered with COBRA. For example if you paid $10 for a prescription while working, you will pay the same. The only way this will change is if your employer changes the plan or costs for the entire company.
Are there things I can do to make sure my NM COBRA is terminated?
The reason that people have their NM coverage cancelled that we hear most often is due to missing a payment or making a late payment. However there are multiple other reasons that coverage can be terminated. Read about what causes COBRA to be terminated.
I was recently fired from a small company. Can I continue my coverage with NM COBRA?
It depends on the reason that you were fired. In most cases if you were fired for something small then you can still be eligible for COBRA if you meet the requirements listed above. However if you were fired for something more serious, known as gross misconduct under the law, then you likely will not qualify for COBRA.
Will I have to find a new doctor if I enroll in COBRA coverage in Mew Mexico?
Most likely you will not need to find a new doctor since COBRA is an extension of the health plan you had. Under the NM COBRA laws, everything about your plan stays the same on COBRA, including your doctors. However if for any reason your company has changed the health insurance plan, then your plan will change as well.
I can't afford New Mexico Mini COBRA. Are there any free medical insurance plans?
Depending on your income there may be some free or lower cost plans available through the state government or federal government. The most common is Medicaid but there are also other options. Additionally you may be able to find cheaper options for plans from private companies, which tend to be much less expensive than NM Mini COBRA.