Health and Dental Insurance
If you leave state employment, the federal Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA) provides for continuation of health and dental benefits coverage at the group premium rate after your coverage with the state ends.
Your current health and dental insurance plans and the state's share of the premium payment will be in effect until the end of the month in which you terminate employment. You will be responsible for full payment of the COBRA premium which begins the first of the month following the qualifying event. The COBRA election period is 60 days after the later of:
- the date coverage would otherwise end, or
- the date of the “COBRA Notification/Election Form.”
If your employment ends, the Iowa Department of Administrative Services will mail a “COBRA Notification/ Election Form” to you within two weeks following your last paycheck. The notification includes monthly benefit costs and election instructions. In the event of the death of an active employee, the family will receive notice of their COBRA rights. If an employee divorces, reduces hours, or has a dependent that is no longer eligible for coverage, the employee must notify his or her Personnel Assistant within 60 days following the event so that COBRA information can be sent.
NOTE: COBRA rights will not be extended to a Domestic Partner or his/her children, if the relationship terminates, if the employee terminates from state employment, or if the domestic partner’s children have an event that makes them ineligible for employee’s plan. See the General Notice of COBRA Continuation Coverage Rights.
When you leave state employment, your state-sponsored life insurance coverage will end on the last day of the month you terminate. You may be able to continue your life insurance coverage by either porting or converting your coverage. For both the portability or conversion continuation option, you do not need to answer medical questions or have a physical exam to continue coverage. Also, you cannot increase the amount of supplemental life insurance when you exercise either the portability or conversion option.
With portability, your life insurance election is “ported” to another group term life policy.
You are eligible for the portability continuation option if you leave state employment prior to your Social Security Normal Retirement Age (SSNRA). Portability is not an option if you:
- Are at or above Social Security Normal Retirement Age (SSNRA)
- Are under the age of 60 and are applying for long term disability benefits
- Are entering active military service
- Your life insurance coverage is being continued through conversion, waiver of premium, or any other continuation provision
Additional information about the portability option is available at the Continuing Life Insurance web page.
With conversion, you continue your life insurance coverage by converting your group term life insurance to an individual whole life policy.
You are eligible for the conversion continuation option if:
- You leave state employment at or above your Social Security Normal Retirement Age (SSNRA); or
- You are applying for long term disability (LTD) benefits, but have not yet been approved for LTD benefits when you leave state employment.
Additional information about the conversion option is available at the DAS Continuing Life Insurance at Retirement or Termination website.
Accidental Death & Dismemberment
Finally, you can convert your AD&D coverage and information about the conversion option is available at the DAS-HRE Continuing Life Insurance at Retirement or Termination website.
Termination Due To Approval for Long Term Disability
Health and Dental Insurance
If you terminate employment upon approval for Long Term Disability (LTD), in lieu of COBRA coverage, you are allowed to continue your coverage with the state group for as long as you remain disabled according to the plan definition of disability. The state’s share of the monthly premium will cease at the end of the month in which your employment terminates. LTD coverage will begin the first of the month following termination and you will pay the full monthly premium for any insurance coverage you choose to keep. You may drop your state group plan completely. However, there is currently no provision for rejoining the group at a later date.
If you continue your insurance coverage with the State of Iowa group, you will be able to participate in the annual open enrollment period, which will allow you to change your health plan every year. You can continue your group health and group dental coverage separately or together. You do not have to elect to continue in both plans. Your benefits as a member of the Retired/Disabled group are identical to benefits for the plan you held as an active employee.
If the LTD carrier determines that you are no longer eligible for LTD benefits and you are not drawing a retirement benefit, health and dental benefits will stop. You will need to purchase individual health and/or dental coverage at that time.
You can continue your coverage with the group if you become eligible for Medicare. It is your responsibility to submit proof that you have Medicare Parts A and B to your health insurance
carrier. Medicare will become the primary payor on claims and the state group will pay as secondary. A premium rate reduction will occur at that time.
Generally, Medicare eligibility is granted when you turn age 65. It can also be granted at an earlier age if you have a disability. Once you become Medicare eligible, you may elect to drop the state group coverage and purchase a private Medicare Supplement Policy. A Medicare Supplement Policy differs from the state group in that the benefits provided vary by supplement option. If you continue with the state group plan after you become eligible for Medicare, your benefits do not change. Benefits offered to Medicare eligible persons are the same as the benefit plan offered prior to becoming Medicare eligible.
Employees must see their personnel assistant for specifics and the required paperwork at the time of termination of employment.
Life Insurance Under Age 60
If you are under age 60 when you are approved for LTD, your life insurance automatically continues in the same amount that you maintained while you were working. You will not have to pay premiums for your coverage as long as you continue to meet the state’s Long Term Disability insurance carrier's definition of disability, or until you reach age 70, whichever occurs first. The insurance is subject to the normal age reductions of coverage in your group contract.
If your Long Term disability coverage ends, your life insurance coverage also ends. You can elect to convert your group term life insurance to an individual whole life policy through the life insurance carrier.
Life Insurance Over Age 60
If you are age 60 or older on your date of disability (last active day at work), you can continue your group life insurance by either converting or porting your coverage. You will be given a Notice of Continuation of Coverage form when your life insurance coverage ends or your employment terminates, whichever occurs first. To continue coverage, you must mail or fax the form to request information within 15 days from the date of this notice or 31 days from your group coverage termination date, whichever is later. Contact your department's personnel assistant for the Notice of Continuation of Coverage form.