Comprehensive COBRA Insurance Information

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COBRA Insurance Deadlines

One of the most common questions people have about COBRA insurance is about timelines and timeframes for enrolling in COBRA insurance. Use the chart below to help you better understand your rights with COBRA insurance and important deadlines you need to make sure to follow. Like any federal law, the timelines are extremely important and not staying within the enrollment window will make you ineligible for COBRA insurance.

If you fail to sign up for COBRA within the enrollment window, miss a payment, or forget to notify your employer of changes you can lose your COBRA coverage and be without medical insurance.

COBRA Event Timeline

Initial Notice of COBRA Rights from employer

Within 2 weeks, or 14 days, of enrollment in employer sponsored health plan


Qualifying Event Notice/Specific Notice/COBRA Election Form

For an employee who is terminated or has their hours reduced

Divorce or loss of dependent child status or if employee becomes eligible for Medicare

The employer has 30 days to notify the insurance company, who then has 14 days to contact you.


Qualifying Event Notice/Specific Notice/COBRA Election Form

When there is a divorce, loss of dependent status, or employee is eligible for Medicare

Employee has 60 days to notify the employer of the change


Sign up for COBRA Insurance

You have 60 days from the date of the COBRA election notice


First premium payment is due

You have 45 days from COBRA selection to pay the first premium


Extension for Disability with COBRA

The disability has to happen within 60 days of COBRA coverage starting


COBRA insurance ends

Initial Term: 18 months

Extension due to Disability: 29 months

Extension for spouse, dependent child, or employee becoming eligible for Medicare: 36 months

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