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Need Quick Help- anyone
Old 10-17-2006, 09:57 AM   #1
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Need Quick Help- anyone

Does anyone know what the rules are regarding COBRA of medical insurance? If you resign your job, can you COBRA your medical insurance? Or do you have to get fired?

Thanks.
Momtwo
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Re: Need Quick Help- anyone
Old 10-17-2006, 10:01 AM   #2
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Re: Need Quick Help- anyone

You are eligible for COBRA even if you quit your job.

I should say that not all employers have to offer COBRA benefits. Some small employers are not governed by the federal law that provides for COBRA rights. However, some states cover those small businesses with their own state version of COBRA.
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Re: Need Quick Help- anyone
Old 10-17-2006, 10:21 AM   #3
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Re: Need Quick Help- anyone

Also, if you're fired for gross misconduct, the employer does not have to offer COBRA at all.
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Re: Need Quick Help- anyone
Old 10-17-2006, 11:20 AM   #4
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Re: Need Quick Help- anyone

Here is the scenario. My brother filed a complaint against his boss with HR. The boss when he found out about the complaint filed his own complaint against my brother. HR answered my brothers complaint this morning along with the bosses boss telling my brother that he had 2 choices. He could leave the company at the end of today with 2 weeks pay and all of his vacation pay or my brother could stay but because my brother and the boss had had strong words(lots of anger) that my brother has to go to anger management classes. He also has to do any extra assignments the
boss gives him for nights and weekends. Basically they are trying to force him out. They also wrote him up stating they did not give him some vacation time off that he took 2 weeks ago even though the boss approved that vacation time. The boss and his boss are in each other's pocket. They have worked together at every company they go to. One brings the other along. My brother made his mistake by filing a complaint against the boss for the bosses misconduct. BTW, HR is not answering my brother's complaint.

Here is the kicker. My brother's wife is pregnant with twins and needs his medical insurance. He needs the COBRA.

I think my brother only has 2 choices: To stay there and take their bull until the babies are born or get a letter from HR if he leaves today stating there was no misconduct and that he resigned.

There has never been any gross misconduct- just a complaint filed against the boss and one heated argument with the boss. Nothing else! My brother is top notch in his field and does an excellent job.

But I am worried that if he leaves and COBRA's his insurance that his company will try to pull the gross misconduct card.

What do you experts think?
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Re: Need Quick Help- anyone
Old 10-17-2006, 11:22 AM   #5
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Re: Need Quick Help- anyone

I think there's enough at stake that he needs legal advice.
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As if you didn't know..If the above message contains medical content, it's NOT intended as advice, and may not be accurate, applicable or sufficient. Don't rely on it for any purpose. Consult your own doctor for all medical advice.
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Re: Need Quick Help- anyone
Old 10-17-2006, 11:25 AM   #6
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Re: Need Quick Help- anyone

Rich or Martha,

What kind of lawyer should he talk to?

BTW, my brother has never had anything up to this point but excellent evaluations and been promoted rapidly up the ranks.

Momtwo
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Re: Need Quick Help- anyone
Old 10-17-2006, 11:29 AM   #7
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Re: Need Quick Help- anyone

Well I am not a lawyer, however...

It is my understanding that someone is hired "at will" meaning that you can quit anytime and they can let you go anytime. Companies have pretty wide discretion to let people go. The exceptions being that you can't fire someone cause' they are a certain race or religion or are old.

These type cases, if a lawyer takes it, will be expensive and your brother will most likely lose.

Your brother needs to ask himself this question: Why does he want to work with a toxic boss ?

Maybe it's time to send out that resume.
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Re: Need Quick Help- anyone
Old 10-17-2006, 11:31 AM   #8
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Re: Need Quick Help- anyone

Bottom line is he does not want to work for this toxic boss. However he has to make sure he is protected medically for his wife and his babies.

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Re: Need Quick Help- anyone
Old 10-17-2006, 11:44 AM   #9
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Re: Need Quick Help- anyone

I'm no attorney but I did spend 27 years as a "boss" in a non-govt. job and have on at least one occasion stayed in a Holiday Inn.

If they gave your brother the choice of resigning or staying and attending anger management courses, it would appear to me they would have a tough time proving gross negligence. The question would be if he was guilty of gross negligence, why didn't they fire him immediately?

I don't see how the employer could deny him COBRA if he resigns. If he does, he needs to do so in writing and give two weeks notice to be on the safe side. Since they've already said they would give him two weeks pay, I'm assuming they will do that in lieu of him working the two week notice period.

Is he aware COBRA requires he pay both his and the employer's premium, which could add up to a substantial chunk of change each month?

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Re: Need Quick Help- anyone
Old 10-17-2006, 01:05 PM   #10
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Re: Need Quick Help- anyone

He should at least call and talk to an employment lawyer. Not for litigation, but to help with exiting from the employer smoothly and with as much as possible.

If your brother resigns, he shouldn't have an issue with COBRA. But, as REWahoo says, he has to pay the employer's share of the premium plus an administration fee.

When someone is "forced" to resign, that person may be entitled to unemployment compensation. This is one reason to talk to an employment lawyer. Another reason is to get an agreement that no bad references will be given.

Here is some information on what is "gross misconduct." http://www.onque.com/tips/gross_misc...exception.html
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Re: Need Quick Help- anyone
Old 10-17-2006, 08:05 PM   #11
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Re: Need Quick Help- anyone

I appreciate everyone's help today. My brother is staying on till he can talk to a litigation lawyer and make sure of his rights and especially on the Cobra issue. He will do what they want till he is ready to resign and then give two weeks notice. All of your advice today was invaluable.

Thanks again!

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