1. 47 POINTS
    Kevin Haney
    A.S.K. Benefit Solutions, New Jersey
    COBRA stands for the Consolidated Omnibus Reconciliation Act which was passed in 1986, and amends the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA).

    COBRA provides for the temporary continuation of healthcare benefits, when coverage might otherwise be lost. It applies to members of group health insurance plans with more than twenty members. Private workers are covered, but not government employees.
    Answered on September 29, 2014
  2. 5527 POINTS
    Marlin McKelvyPRO
    President, Consumer Directed Benefit Solutions, Memphis, Tennessee
    While it sounds like something that would jump up and bite you, it has actually been a great thing for many people over the years. COBRA is the abbreviation for the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (you can see why it's referred to as COBRA now) which was passed by Congress in 1985. This bill addressed many issues but the part of it that the average person would be familiar with is its provision that requires employers with 20 or more employees to allow former employees to continue to participate in that employer's group health insurance plan (assuming you weren't terminated for cause). In most cases you can continue your coverage for up to 18-months though there are other situations, such as divorce, were the continuation period is even longer. This continuation of coverage provision was created when underwriting of health insurance plans, pre-existing condition exclusions and the possibility of being declined for coverage in the individual marketplace still existed. While COBRA continues to be in effect, with the passage of the Affordable Care Act (ObamaCare) and it's elimination of underwriting, pre-existing condition exclusions and guaranteed issue requirement, COBRA's value has been greatly diminished for many people.
    Answered on September 29, 2014
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