Although not an exhaustive list, these are the services provided by BRS COBRA Administration and can serve as a tool to evaluate if your current program meets Department of Labor requirements.
Communication and Monitoring
- Notice to all employees explaining their rights under COBRA (commonly known as the “General Rights Notice”)
- Notice to employees/dependents who experience a “qualifying event”
- Notice to qualified beneficiaries if they are not eligible to continue coverage
- Notice to COBRA participants if their payment is short by an “insignificant” amount
- Notice to COBRA participants of their conversion privilege
- Notice of termination when coverage is cancelled prior to the end of the COBRA term
- Monitor COBRA election periods
- Monitor COBRA participant’s time frames
- Collect funds for COBRA monthly premiums
Process Documentation & Retention
COBRA administration is more than just taking care of individuals “on COBRA”; it is a total process of notifying, tracking, and documenting all facets of compliance with the complex law.
- Documentation and proof of mailing of all notifications for 7 years
- Documentation of all received communications for 7 years
- If challenged by a regulator or a carrier, we could provide documentation that COBRA has been properly administered
Compliance is not optional, it is mandated by law.
Penalties, fines and repercussions
- Plans that violate COBRA’s provisions may be subject to a non-deductible excise tax penalty equal to $100 per day, per affected individual, per violation
- In addition, ERISA provides notice penalties of up to $110 per day from the date of the compliance failure
- Employers may also be sued by the employee for COBRA noncompliance
- Employer may be responsible for all medical bills and punitive damages
- Carriers may refuse to pay claims if they determine an individual is participating via a COBRA plan improperly