Dr. Alicia Wooldridge is a board certified Family Medicine physician with over a decade of experience.
In the case of serious illness
The California Civil Rights Law Group advises employees with serious health conditions who depend on employer health coverage for life-saving treatment. “Health insurance is one of the most important benefits employees rely on, and when someone unexpectedly loses their job they need to understand what their options are,” says Navruz Avloni, an attorney there. “Weve handled cases where employees were diagnosed with life-threatening illnesses, or were injured on the job and shortly thereafter, got fired. In that kind of situation, you should consult with an attorney to see whether your federal or state rights have been violated.”
For more advice about accessing benefits and managing your finances after a job loss, check out LiveCareers library of resources. We offer tips and tricks to make your transition a smooth one and ideas for how to gather the help and support you need during your period of unemployment.
Tom Lipkis , WalletHub Credit Card Consultant
@cindercard • This answer was first published on 02/09/18 and it was last updated on 05/08/18.For the most current information about a financial product, you should always check and confirm accuracy with the offering financial institution. Editorial and user-generated content is not provided, reviewed or endorsed by any company.
Health insurance is active for at least 2 months after termination, in most cases, but some people keep their coverage for up to 3 years. That’s because a combination of federal and state laws give you the right to keep your health insurance active after termination but require that you meet several conditions to be eligible. To keep your coverage active, you generally must apply for an extension within 10-90 days of receiving your termination notice. You also need to have been participating in your employer’s group health insurance planfor at least 3 months before being let go. This coverage applies to you whether you were fired/laid off or you quit your job.
In the unfortunate event that you lose your job, it’s good to be aware of your health insurance rights. You should know which federal and state laws protect you and how.On the federal level, you have COBRA, more formally known as the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1986. It applies to companies with 20 or more employees and lets you keep your health insurance at your employer’s group rate for up to 18 months after termination. In other words, you have to pay for the coverage, but it’s probably cheaper than what you’d get as an individual. Your spouse and dependent children will be covered for 18-36 months, too.
Most states also have similar laws that fill in some of COBRA’s gaps. They typically apply to companies with fewer than 20 employees, for example. And some entitle you to participate in a company’s plan for longer.
Standing up for these rights can be difficult. You may have to file a lawsuit, or at least threaten one. But it could be worth it, depending on how much health insurance would cost if purchased independently.
Seems optimistic. One contractor employer I recently worked for had a standard benefits memo that said healthcare coverage ended on the last day worked. My current/most recent contract employer ended my contract middle of month and said bennies last til end of month. Thats in Ohio.
My company terminated medical/dental/vision insurance on the last day of employment and did not deduct the remaining premium from the last pay check. They stated its their policy to terminate benefits on the last date of employment. They will not provide Cobra benefit details for a minimum of 10 days following the last date of employment so there is a lapse in insurance coverage. Is this legal?
If you lose job-based health insurance
If you lose job-based health insurance, you have 2 main options:
How long do you have health insurance after termination?
Does health insurance end the day you leave your job?
How long are you covered on insurance after leaving a job?
Does insurance end with termination?
What happens to your benefits when you get fired?