Both Vermont law and the federal Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA) permit employees to continue their group health coverage if they leave the group for certain specified reasons. According to federal law, when comparing state and federal continuation rights, employees may select the law that is more favorable to their situation.
Vermont law requires that 18 months of continuation be provided when group hospital, medical, and dental coverage would be lost in the following circumstances:
• Loss of employment, including a reduction in hours that results in ineligibility for employer-sponsored coverage;
• Divorce, dissolution, or legal separation of the covered employee from the employee's spouse or civil union partner;
• A dependent child ceasing to qualify as a dependent child under the generally applicable requirements of the policy; or
• Death of the covered employee (VT Stat. Tit. 8 Sec. 4090a).
Continuation of group benefits under Vermont law is not required if:
• The deceased or terminated employee was not insured under the group policy on the day of the qualifying event;
• An individual is covered by Medicare;
• An individual is covered by any other insured or uninsured arrangement that provides dental coverage or hospital and medical coverage for individuals in a group and under which the individual was not covered immediately before the qualifying event, and no preexisting condition exclusion applies, provided, however, that the person shall remain eligible for continuation coverages that are not available under the insured or uninsured arrangement; or
• The employee was terminated for work-connected misconduct that would disqualify an individual from receiving ...