Although the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act has been in place for nearly 30 years, its intricacies still challenge many employers.

The law contains complicated regulations and has been interpreted through numerous court cases, which continues to cause confusion to many employers, say Karen McLeese, vice president of employee benefit regulatory affairs at CBIZ Benefits & Insurance Services.

For instance, many employers believe that at any time when health coverage ends, COBRA is to be offered, but this is not true, McLeese says. Instead, COBRA only applies when there is a delineated qualifying event, such as a divorce, death, loss of dependence status, termination or employment reduction.

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