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Ask Law Educator, Esq. Your Own Question
Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
Category: California Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 116706
Experience:  JA Mentor -Attorney Labor/employment, corporate, sports law, admiralty/maritime and civil rights law
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Cobra extension

Customer Question

cobra extension
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: California Employment Law
Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Sorry, but I don't see here details that were accommodating my question.
In August of 28, 2015 I was laid off from large private corporation an immediately applied for cobra because my wife had 2 surgeries (cancer tumors removal) and was undergo chemo. I was applying for COBRA not in a usual way. Since my wife needed immediate coverage I requested the enrollment form to be sent to me and submitted it way before COBRA enrollment package was even sent to me.
Cobra started on August 30th. In early September we received the letter that my wife got SSA disability and the letter was dated as of August 31st. We are not recalling and can't find COBRA package that company is saying was sent to us. In transition package provided by the company prior my departure qualifying events were not mentioned and for that reason, we had no idea that we need to apply to 11 months cobra extension during first 60 days. Now all of our requests for extension and appeal were denied. Is there any legal way to get extension?
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 9 months ago.
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.
If the COBRA package you received did not see notice that you had to apply for the extension within 60 days, then the only recourse you have is filing a complaint with the US Department of Labor, as they handle COBRA issues. Many times the US DOL can call the insurer and try to convince them to allow the continuance, but if the company insists that you missed the deadline the US DOL cannot force the company to do anything. Legally, once a person misses a COBRA deadline, those deadlines are set in stone unless you can get the US DOL to convince the company that due to your extenuating circumstances and health you could not make the deadline because of your medical condition, as that is the only real argument they can make. I am sorry to say though if US DOL cannot convince them, because you missed the deadline you have no other options.
In most of these cases, we have found DOL to be fairly successful according to customers who have used them.
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