Federal Cobra…..Mr. Employer, are you covered??

When I meet an employer that has at least 20 employees, one of my first questions to them is: “Who handles your Cobra?”.  Typically the response I get is either a long dumbfounded stare, or they tell me that their broker or HR Dept handles it.

If you ask a Cobra expert to answer that question, their response would be: “it better be a reputable 3rd party administrator, cause you don’t want to mess with Cobra”.

Folks, I am NOT an expert in Cobra, and frankly, I don’t want to be.  But I know just enough to understand the ramifications of NOT having it handled correctly.  Cobra is the OSHA of Health Insurance.  Cobra is a health insurance plan which allows an employee who leaves a company to continue to be covered under the company’s health plan, for a certain time period and under certain conditions. The name results from the fact that the program was created under the Consolidated Omnibus Reconciliation Act. The system is designed to prevent employees who are between jobs from experiencing a lapse in coverage.

For employers that offer Employee Health Benefits or Employee Health Insurance, THEY are responsible for the administration and COMPLIANCE of COBRA, unless they contract with a 3rd party to perform those duties.  At Brauer Insurance Services LLC, as part of our added value services, WE pay for the 3rd party administration of COBRA, which relieves our groups from the Fiduciary Liability.  The 3rd party administrator takes care of all the compliance issues, filings, archiving, etc.  Even if your insurance company “handles” your COBRA for you…..if they make a mistake, its on YOU!
California Employee Health Insurance ERISA laws are very clear….the owner of the company is PERSONALLY liable for non-compliance, unless you contract with another source.  If you offer Group Employee Benefits to your employees, make sure you’re covered….NONE of your Commercial Liability insurance will cover these types of “mistakes”.
“To Protect and To Serve” is not just our slogan…its how we conduct our business.  We offer many added value services to our clients, the COBRA administration is just one example.  We also offer a comprehensive EA (Employee Assistance) program for all benefited employees, and a complete HR Workplace Compliance Center, that features on call HR Attorneys that can help with ANY type of HR or Employment Law issue…..again, you pay nothing for these services!!
If you offer San Jose Health Insurance, or California Employer Benefits, give us a call.  Brauer Insurance Services LLC is an INDEPENDENT, no fee, family owned insurance agency.
Steve Brauer-President/CEO
3150 Almaden Expwy, Suite 203
San Jose, CA 95118

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