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Benefits
Eastern Washington University
Cheney, WA 99004
phone: 509.359.2488
fax: 509.359.2874

COBRA

What is COBRA?

The Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA) is a federal law that gives you and your covered dependents the right to continue group health coverage on a self-paid basis if eligibility for the employer-sponsored group medical and dental is lost.

Eligibility

18 Months of COBRA eligibility is available if:

  • you terminated from EWU employment for reasons other than gross misconduct, or
  • your hours of employment at the EWU are reduced to the extent that eligibility for employer-sponsored medical and dental benefits would ordinarily be lost.

36 Months of COBRA eligibility is available:

  • to the eligible dependents of a EWU employee who dies while employed,
  • to the divorced spouse of an EWU employee, or
  • to a child of a EWU employee who loses eligibility for dependent coverage due to age or loss of dependent status.

You are not eligible for COBRA continuation if:

  • you are covered by another group health plan at the time of the qualifying event,
  • you or a dependent later become covered by another group health plan, unless that plan
  • contains a pre-existing condition exclusion, or
  • you were dismissed for gross misconduct.

What Coverage May I Continue?

You may continue medical and dental coverage together or either coverage separately. You and each of your enrolled family members are entitled to make a separate decision to continue coverage.

Notice Requirement

COBRA requires you or your dependent(s) to provide notice to the Benefits Office or HCA within 60 days after a qualifying event occurs. If you are self-paying your insurance premium when the qualifying event occurs, you or your dependent must notify the Health Care Authority in Olympia.

The enrollment deadline is 60 days following the date of a qualifying event, or the date on which you receive notice from your employer, whichever is later.

To enroll in COBRA:

  1. HCA will send you a Notice of qualifying event packet when EWU reports your separation to them.
  2. Send the form and payment to the state Health Care Authority at the address enclosed in enrollment packet. Premiums must be paid retroactive to the first day of the month following the qualifying event.

Click here to see current COBRA rates.

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