As previously posted, eligibility for the COBRA subsidy was extended through February 28, 2010, and the subsidy period goes for up to 15 months. Of course, individuals who have been denied the subsidy are entitled to appeal the denial and the new application for expedited review of the denial is available here.
While I don't anticipate employers will need to fill out this application, I think employers should be aware of what type of documents that they might have to provide terminated employees to assist them in their appeal: The notice provides that:
- These documents will assist you in completing your application : COBRA election notice; Information on your plan sponsor, employer, insurance company, and/or plan administrator; A "Request for Treatment as an Assistance Eligible Individual" or other form used to request the premium reduction; Insurance information card; Payroll stubs showing deductions for health benefits; Any documents detailing the date and circumstances of the termination of the employee’s employment; or Any documentation you were provided regarding the denial of the premium reduction.
Note that the COBRA election notice and the request for Treatment as an Assistance Eligible Individual are required to appeal. This means that these documents will be reviewed by the DOL when the appeal is filed. So I think it is very important to make sure your COBRA election notice and other COBRA documents are up to date. An employee who appeals the denial of a subsidy could potentially trigger a bigger audit if your documents are defective.