1. Divorce from a spouse who is the primary policyholder.
  2. The death of the employee who is the primary policy holder.
  3. A dependent child over 18 who is not enrolled in college or has exceeded the eligibility age while still in college.

If the qualifying event is divorce, then COBRA is available for up to 36 months after the event. COBRA is minimally available for 18 months after other qualifying events.

If you’re uninsured, I advise you to become aware of the difference between not-for-profit providers and for-profit providers.

Most of the original “hospitals” in the U.S. were started by churches as charities for the sick and dying. In 1910, something called the Flexner Report was published, which had the effect of forcing physician specialists and university medical schools to “marry” themselves to hospitals where large numbers of sick people were located in one place. This was great for physicians because they no longer had to ride a horse all over town going from house to house.

Ironically, 100 years later, healthcare has become the fastest growing business segment of the U.S. economy and about 60% of community hospitals are still legally set up as church-sponsored charities or education-related charities. Both church-sponsored hospitals and university-based hospitals have a not-for-profit status.

If you are uninsured, this is great news for you. Though not-for- profit hospitals are bound by the broad-based definition of “health promotion” of the IRS, in the society we live in, they are still held to

THINGS TO KNOW IF YOU HAVE INSURANCE // 25