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COBRA Insurance Wiki

Posted on: September 25th, 2012 by Kristen Marie

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A wiki is a website or article that is compiled and updated by users to share information about a certain topic and this is our own version of a cobra insurance wiki – compiled of common user questions and responses to help you find the information you want and need about COBRA. Who better to hear from then people who have been in the same situation as you have and know just what you should consider and think about.

Can you explain COBRA insurance to me?

COBRA is a way to continue to use the the insurance you had while you were employed (or through an employee) after job loss. Job loss can be either voluntary job loss like quitting or retiring and can be involuntary like being laid off or fired. With COBRA you and your family are able to keep using the exact same plan for up to 1.5 years, however you are responsible for paying the entire cost. The employer no longer helps with costs.

What insurance company is in charge of COBRA? Can I choose?

COBRA insurance is a law not an insurance company of plan. Under this law employees and their family members have the option to continue to use the exact same insurance plan after job loss for up to 18 months. Therefore the insurance company in charge of COBRA is the exact same company that you had before. Everything stays the same.

I heard COBRA is expensive, is that true?

Unfortunately for most people COBRA is very expensive since you must pay the full cost on your own without any employer help. For most the cost of insurance will double or even triple compared to what they are used to paying. The average cost for a family is over $1000 and the average cost for one person is around $450 monthly.

I only need COBRA for about 6 months, is that possible?

Yes. COBRA insurance can be used for as long or as short of a period as you wish up to the 18 months. You can cancel COBRA at anytime as long as you reach out to the insurance company and let them know you no longer need the coverage. Additionally if you think that you will only need coverage for six months, you may also consider a short term insurance plan which will cost significantly less than COBRA.

How will I fill my prescriptions with COBRA? How much will they cost?

The cost of prescriptions will be the same as they were when you were covered through an employer since it is the exact same plan. For example if you paid $10 for regular prescriptions and $5 for generic prescriptions while you were employed, the cost will be the exact same with COBRA. Additionally doctors, hospitals, and other health services will also be treated the same under COBRA insurance. Remember the plan is the exact same with COBRA. COBRA is just the law that allows you to continue to use it and makes sure that you do not experience any lapses or breaks in coverage.

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