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The Wagner Law Group

The Wagner Law Group, A Professional Corporation, is a nationally recognized ERISA & employee benefits, estate planning, employment, labor & human resources practice. 

 

Established in 1996, The Wagner Law Group has 22 attorneys engaged exclusively in employee benefits, estate planning and employment law. Six of our attorneys are AV rated by Martindale-Hubbell as having very high to preeminent legal abilities and ethical standards. The firm is among the largest ERISA boutiques in the country. Our practice is national in scope, with clients in more than 40 states and several foreign countries.

  

 

 

 

Contact Info

The Wagner Law Group

 

  Integrity | Excellence

  

Boston 

Tel: (617) 357-5200 

Fax: (617) 357-5250 

99 Summer Street 

13th Floor

Boston, MA 02110


Palm Beach Gardens 

Tel: (561) 293-3590
Fax: (561) 293-3591
7108 Fairway Drive
Suite 125
Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33418

   

Tampa

Tel: (813) 603-2959

Fax: (813) 603-2961

101 East Kennedy Boulevard

Suite 2140
Tampa, FL  33602 

 

San Francisco

Tel: (415) 625-0002

Fax: (415) 358-8300

315 Montgomery Street

Suite 904

San Francisco, CA 94104

 

St. Louis

Tel: (314) 236-0065

Fax: (314) 236-5743
100 South 4th Street, Suite 550
St. Louis, MO  63102 

 

www.wagnerlawgroup.com

 

 

 

 

July 30, 2015

 

 Health and Welfare Law Alert

 

 

 

COBRA Tax Credit Reinstated

 

 

 

The recently enacted Trade Preferences Extension Act of 2015 has reinstated a little-known health care trade adjustment assistance tax credit ("TAA") for certain individuals' COBRA coverage premiums. The credit, which had expired on January 1, 2014, has been retroactively reinstated through December 31, 2019. 

 

Background. The Trade Adjustment Assistance Act of 2002 introduced provisions for monetary assistance for U.S. workers displaced by international trade to assist them in purchasing health insurance coverage. It also provides a second period during which affected individuals could elect COBRA coverage. However, only individuals specifically designated as eligible individuals by the Department of Labor ("DOL") and state employment agencies are entitled to the tax credit.

 

Under the 2002 Act, workers whose employment was adversely affected by international trade, such as increased imports or a shift in production to another country, may become eligible for a TAA. Part of this assistance is a tax credit (currently 72.5%) for the purchase of COBRA coverage. Employees who become eligible for TAA after a termination of employment or reduction of hours and who did not elect COBRA coverage during their original election period receive a second COBRA election period.

 

TAA Program. The TAA Program is administered by the DOL's Employment and Training Administration (ETA) through state employment service agencies. The TAA process starts with the filing of a petition for eligibility with the ETA. A petition may be filed by a group of three or more workers, by a company official, by state employment security agencies, by dislocated worker units, or by a union or other duly authorized representative of such workers. The workers on whose behalf a petition is filed must be, or have been, employed at the firm or subdivision identified in the petition. Workers' employment must be, or have been, related to the production of products described in the petition

 

An individual who has been determined to be eligible for TAA benefits has a second 60-day COBRA election period, if he or she rejected COBRA when originally offered. The period begins on the first day of the month in which he or she becomes eligible under the TAA program, provided that this second election is made within six months after the date that health coverage was originally lost. If COBRA coverage is elected during this second election period, it becomes effective on the first day of the second election period and not on the date  coverage was lost.

 

Although relatively few qualified beneficiaries may be eligible for this tax credit, the Department of Labor may revise its model COBRA notices to include information on the TAA.

 

 

 

 

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This Newsletter is provided for information purposes by The Wagner Law Group to clients and others who may be interested in the subject matter, and may not be relied upon as specific legal advice.  This material is not to be construed as legal advice or legal opinions on specific facts. Under the Rules of the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts, this material may be considered advertising.