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Dollar sign in lifesaver Montana is one of only six states without a mini-COBRA program, despite the estimate that around 100,000 Montanans work at businesses with 19 or fewer employees. (Image: Shutterstock)

For employees of small businesses in Montana suddenly laid off during the covid-19 pandemic, maintaining health insurance coverage could be a struggle.

Employers with 20 or more workers offer a bridge insurance program made possible by a federal law known as the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act, or COBRA. The law allows people who have left a job voluntarily or involuntarily to keep their former employer’s health insurance plan for 18 months by paying the premium that the employer used to cover.

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