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COBRA Insurance in Texas:

What are your options?

State Insurance Department Information:

Texas insurance department documents and articles of interest:

 

Cobra Insurance in Texas:

The Federal Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA) allows retiring employees, or those who lose coverage due to quitting a job or reduced work hours, to continue group coverage for a limited period of time. This also applies to their dependents who lose coverage because of divorce or legal separation; death of the covered employee; the covered employee qualifying for Medicare; or a loss of dependent status under the health planís provisions. COBRA applies only to employers with 20 or more employees.


If you qualify for COBRA benefits, your health-plan administrator must give you a notice stating your right to choose to continue benefits provided by the plan. You then have 60 days to accept coverage or lose all rights to the benefits. Once you select COBRA coverage, you may have to pay 100 percent of the total insurance cost, plus a two percent processing fee.

 

If you work for an employer that has over 20 full-time employees:  Then federal COBRA law applies, go to COBRA summary

 

If you work for an employer that has under 20 full-time employees:   If your employer has less than 20 employees, you will fall under Texas continuation state law. 

Texas State continuation of group coverage

If you meet certain criteria, Texas law requires your group plan to allow you to continue coverage for six months. The six-month "continuation period" begins after any federal COBRA extension period ends, or begins immediately if COBRA coverage does not apply. Therefore, if you are eligible and opt for COBRA coverage, you may have a total of 24 months to find new health care coverage.

State continuation of group coverage may not terminate until the earliest of the six months after the date the election is made, the date on which the failure to make timely premium payments would terminate coverage, the date the covered person is covered by another similar health care coverage, or the date the group coverage terminates in its entirety.

Before the Texas continuation period ends, your group plan is also required to provide you with information on how to enroll in the Texas Health Insurance Risk Pool.

What are your options?

  1. Contact your previous employer and ask him/her to give you your COBRA papers so that you may see how much it is to continue your health insurance through the group plan.

  2. Shop for temporary health insurance: if you do not have preexisting conditions and need temporary coverage for 1-6 months then temporary health insurance is a great solution and you will find that it is extremely affordable.

  3. If you have preexisting conditions or pregnant you should try to get on another group plan (or pay for COBRA) as quick as you can or contact your local insurance state department to see what they have available for you.  Many states have a guaranteed issue health insurance plan for individuals who cannot secure coverage through a private health insurer.  Check out our Uninsurable State Risk Pools Resource page.

Texas State Insurance Department Contact Information:

 

Texas State Seal
The Texas Department of Insurance
333 Guadalupe, Austin 78701 - P.O. Box 149104, Austin 78714-9104
(512) 463-6169 - 800-578-4677 - Consumer Helpline 800-252-3439

 

Texas COBRA links:

  

 

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