Rising Unemployment Rate Prompts Employees to Seek COBRA Alternatives

by Lesley Politi on December 16, 2008

Rising Unemployment Rate Prompts Employees to Seek COBRA Alternatives

Last update: 9:05 a.m. EST Dec. 10, 2008
ARROYO GRANDE, CA, Dec 10, 2008 (MARKET WIRE via COMTEX) — With unemployment possibly reaching as high as 9% in the next year, BestHealthcareRates.com is fielding a record number of questions about COBRA alternatives for family health insurance plans. Contrary to popular misconceptions, COBRA is not a health insurance plan; rather, it is a law named the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act. COBRA protects employees in the event they lose their employer-sponsored health benefits. Qualified employees may keep the dental and medical insurance they had under their employer for 18 months. However, because the former employee carries the entire cost of the insurance policy — up to 102% of the original premium, the cost of maintaining insurance can be prohibitive.
Uncertain economic times are driving already financially-stressed employees to seek a more affordable COBRA alternative. BestHealthcareRates.com offers more affordable family health insurance plans than what the employer-based plan would provide. By doing health insurance comparisons, one can get similar, lower cost benefits by taking a COBRA alternative. Often, the former employee is not at all aware of their options and they needlessly stay with a higher cost plan. Once they see the benefits of a COBRA alternative, they opt out of their former plan. Dental and medical insurance can be found in these COBRA alternatives too. Without a COBRA alternative, the unemployed may be paying much more than they need to at a time they can least afford it.
“If you have a disability, you may need to opt for your employer’s coverage but can still get a COBRA alternative for the rest of your family,” said Tom Carolan, Director of Client Services with BestHealthcareRates.com. “Again, by making a health insurance comparison, you will see the great potential savings that exist for your family even if you, as an individual, remain on the employer plan. A cost-cutting COBRA alternative is essential for many households even if the coverage is for the rest of the family.”
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