Question

Health Insurance

Why is COBRA so expensive?

A Answers (2)

  • AMichael Roizen, MD, Internal Medicine, answered

    One of the many benefits (pun intended!) of getting health insurance through your employer is cost-sharing. All of your co-workers, your bosses, and the company share the cost of monthly premiums so that each of you doesn’t completely break the bank. However, once you’re off on your own and start receiving healthcare coverage from COBRA, there’s no one to share the cost with, so YOU have to start covering the whole bill. It may seem like a lot, but it is definitely worth the investment if it means you have health insurance.

  • AUnitedHealthcare answered
    COBRA is expensive because you have to pay what you normally paid when you were working, as well as the employer's amount. There is also an administration fee added, which means you end up paying around 102 percent of the cost. Your employer may have been paying thousands each year to provide health coverage. Most people who opt to use COBRA are not aware of the steep prices. But, when you consider the alternative, paying this monthly fee for yourself and your dependents makes COBRA a bargain. Other health coverage options may be available to you, including coverage through the Health Insurance Marketplace at www.HealthCare.gov or by calling 1-800-318-2596. Be sure to read the COBRA Model Election Notice carefully before you make your decision. If you choose to elect COBRA continuation coverage, you should complete the COBRA Continuation Coverage Election Form included in the Notice.
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What is COBRA?