July 21st, 2010 – According to the Kaiser Health News, the US Senate voted 60-40 to extend jobless benefits for people who have been out of work for 6 months or more.
However, it appears COBRA subsidies that pay up to 65 percent of COBRA health insurance premiums will not be extended again. The COBRA subsidy was part of last year’s economic stimulus bill and was extended twice.
As it stands now, it appears that the 15-month 65% subsidy for COBRA insurance premiums is no longer available after June 1st, 2010.
After June 1st, laid off workers will have to pay the full price for COBRA premiums if they wish to keep their former employer’s health insurance plan for up to a maximum of 18 months.