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Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (Cobra)
A federal law that enables employees and their families to continue health care coverage under an employers group health plan even after they experience an event -- such as a layoff, termination, cut in hours, or divorce -- that would otherwise end their coverage. Employees and their families must pay the full premium, but they get to pay the employer-negotiated group rate, which is often less expensive than an individual rate. This continued coverage lasts for 18 to 36 months, depending on the event that made the employee eligible.
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