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Health Care Reform: DOL Releases Temporary Guidance and Model Notice of Exchange Coverage Options to Employees

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May 2013

The DOL issued a Technical Release that provides temporary guidance on the notice that employers must provide to their employees regarding the health coverage options available through state health insurance exchanges. Employers must furnish the notice to current employees and begin providing the notice to new employees no later than October 1, 2013. For 2014, the DOL will consider a notice to have been provided at the time of hire if it is provided within 14 days after an employee’s start date.

Along with the guidance, the DOL has also issued model notices for those employers who currently offer health coverage to some or all employees and those who do not offer coverage.

The DOL has also issued an updated model election notice for COBRA continuation coverage. The notice apprises employees of alternative coverage options available through state health insurance exchanges. The model notice can be furnished by employers to employees who experience a loss in health coverage due to a qualifying event. Along with the other exchange notices, employers should start providing COBRA notices containing updated information regarding state exchanges no later than October 1, 2013.  

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