I’m not able to meet the health insurance requirements after being on maternity leave. How long can I keep my coverage?
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Asked August 13, 2012
After returning from maternity leave, the conditions of your health insurance coverage will return to their original requirements. One place where this could create a problem would be if you are not returning to a full time position, but are only working part time. If this is your situation, you could find that your health insurance plan is in jeopardy.
If your health insurance is threatened because of this or other conditions, there may not be much that you can do. By law, you must be given a minimum of 30 days notice before the coverage can be terminated. And while that time period may be higher for some employers, the period written into your policy is the most consideration that you are entitled to.
The best idea may be to look for a group insurance policy offered through another source, and simply replace the employer coverage. Group insurance coverage is available through several different places, including organizations such as AAA, or semi-private clubs such as Sam's Club.
Under COBRA, you have the option of continuing your current coverage for 180 days or more. The drawback is that you will probably have to pay COBRA administrative fees and any portion previously paid by your employer. COBRA insurance is not intended to be a replacement for group insurance, it is merely meant to keep your coverage effective until you are able to find another health insurance plan.
Finally, private insurance is an option. The drawbacks of individual health insurance are that the costs are dramatically higher, and that the membership qualifications tend to be much more stringent. If you are not able to find a group health plan through other channels or renew your qualification under your employer's plan, individual health insurance may be the only remaining option.
Answered August 13, 2012 by Anonymous