The following information about your interruptions in coverage because of military service comes directly from the FUSD’s Employee Benefits Book. A full copy of the Employee Benefits Book can be downloaded by clicking here.
CONTINUATION OF COVERAGE UNDER USERRA – MILITARY SERVICE
The Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act of 1994 (USERRA) established requirements that employers and health plans must meet for certain Employees who have left employment due to service in the uniformed services. With one important exception, your rights under COBRA and USERRA are essentially the same. Any election that you make pursuant to COBRA will also be an election under USERRA, and COBRA and USERRA will both apply with respect to the continuation coverage elected. But in contrast to COBRA, which provides you and your Dependents up to 18 months of coverage, USERRA provides you and your Dependents up to 24 months of coverage.
COBRA and USERRA coverage are concurrent for up to the first 18 months of coverage. This means that COBRA coverage and USERRA coverage begin at the same time. As with COBRA, you are responsible for paying for USERRA coverage. The monthly premiums are the same. The cost of the USERRA premium is the same as it would be under COBRA.
Your USERRA coverage will terminate if one of the following events takes place before the end of the 24 months:
(1) You fail to make a premium payment within the required time;
(2) You do not return to work within the time required under USERRA following the completion of your service in the uniformed services (the time for returning varies, please contact the District for more details); or
(3) You lose your rights under USERRA as a result of a dishonorable discharge or other conduct specified in USERRA.
You may lose coverage under COBRA and USERRA for different reasons. You could, therefore, lose coverage under COBRA but retain it under USERRA, or vice versa. For example, if you lose coverage under USERRA due to a dishonorable discharge, your COBRA coverage would continue as long as you were within the 18-month time limit (plus any extensions, if applicable) for COBRA.