COBRA Termination Process for Aged Out Dependents

The following update considers the regulatory guidance for handling COBRA beneficiaries during the month in which a dependent attains age 26. A commenter requested clarification on the application of section 4980H to an employee’s child for the month in which the child attains age 26. In response, the final regulations clarify that for purposes of section 4980H, a child is a dependent for the entire calendar month during which he or she attains age 26.

Employers must continue to cover the beneficiary through the end of the month of the dependents attaining the age of 26 on the active plan. Employers may use "Event Date" to continue coverage and do not need to adjust to “End Of Month” because of this regulation change.  The event which is occurring in the above situation is loss of coverage.  The loss of coverage happens on the last day of the month therefore the date of the event will always fall on the end of the month for dependants aging off.

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