The IRS and Employee Benefits Security Administration (U.S. Labor Department) have jointly issued a final rule to extend certain timeframes concerning participants’ rights to healthcare coverage, portability, and continuation of group health plan coverage under COBRA, and to extend the time for plan participants to file or perfect benefit claims or appeals of denied claims. The extensions are provided as relief measures in response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
These extensions provide participants and beneficiaries of employee benefit plans additional time to make health coverage and other decisions affecting their benefits during the COVID-19 outbreak.
The final rule is intended to minimize the possibility of individuals losing benefits because of a failure to comply with certain pre-established timeframes. Similarly, the final rule recognizes that affected group health plans may have difficulty in complying with certain notice obligations.
The final rule [PDF 487 KB] includes examples of application of the relief measures.
The Labor Department posted an advance version of the final rule on its website in advance of publication in the Federal Register. The final rule was released for publication in the Federal Register on April 30, 2020. The version released to the Federal Register is the official version.
The KPMG name and logo are trademarks used under license by the independent member firms of the KPMG global organization. KPMG International Limited is a private English company limited by guarantee and does not provide services to clients. No member firm has any authority to obligate or bind KPMG International or any other member firm vis-à-vis third parties, nor does KPMG International have any such authority to obligate or bind any member firm. The information contained herein is of a general nature and is not intended to address the circumstances of any particular individual or entity. Although we endeavor to provide accurate and timely information, there can be no guarantee that such information is accurate as of the date it is received or that it will continue to be accurate in the future. No one should act on such information without appropriate professional advice after a thorough examination of the particular situation. For more information, contact KPMG's Federal Tax Legislative and Regulatory Services Group at: + 1 202 533 4366, 1801 K Street NW, Washington, DC 20006.