On May 2, 2014, the U.S. Department of Labor (the “DOL”) issued proposed regulations amending the notice requirements for the group health plan continuation coverage provisions of the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1985 (“COBRA”). Simultaneously, the DOL released new model notices that sponsors of group health plans may use to comply with the COBRA notice requirements. Both the updated general notice and updated election notice explain that coverage is now available in the Health Insurance Marketplace (the “Marketplace”), and the new election notice includes information about special enrollment rights in the Marketplace. Until final rulemaking is completed, use of the model notices on the DOL’s website will constitute good faith compliance with the notice content requirements of COBRA.

A copy of the proposed regulations is available here.

The model notices are available here.