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For groups of 1-50 employees

State mini-COBRA law:

Pennsylvania Act 2 of 2009 (mini-COBRA) became effective on July 10, 2009. This act requires small groups with 2 – 19 employees to offer health care continuation coverage to qualified employees and dependents who lose their insurance as a result of a qualifying event.

Mini-COBRA applies to medical coverage and does not include stand alone dental and vision coverage.

Who is eligible for mini-COBRA?

An employee and/or dependent who:

  • Was continuously covered under the group policy for three months prior to termination
  • Lost coverage due to a “qualifying event” on or after July 10, 2009
  • Is not covered or eligible for Medicare
  • Is not eligible for employee based coverage as an eligible dependent
  • Is not covered or eligible for other group coverage (excluding Medical Assistance, Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP)

What is a qualifying event?

To be covered for mini-COBRA, the eligible employee or dependent must have suffered one of the following qualifying events which resulted in loss of health care coverage:

  • Termination of employment for reasons other than gross misconduct
  • Reduction of hours that result in loss of coverage
  • Covered employee becomes eligible for Medicare (dependent requires group coverage)
  • Divorce or legal action
  • Child ages out of coverage
  • Termination due to employer’s bankruptcy proceedings
  • Death of the covered employee


Under the Pennsylvania mini-COBRA statute and the amendment to this law, employers are responsible for providing their employees with notice of their rights under mini-COBRA.

To learn more about mini-COBRA, visit the Pennsylvania Insurance Department.