How do state and local family leave laws affect COBRA rights?
Some states and local governments have laws that provide more generous medical leave benefits than those required under federal FMLA. If both laws apply to a particular employer, employees are not required to designate whether they are taking federal FMLA leave or leave under state laws, according to the Department of Labor. Employers that are subject to both federal and state laws must comply with the federal or state provision that provides the greater benefit to their employees. But note that final IRS regulations provide that any state or local law that requires coverage under a group health plan to be maintained during a leave of absence for a period longer than the 12-week FMLA period does not affect the determination of when a COBRA qualifying event has occurred. For example, Connecticut provides 16 weeks of family and medical leave in a 24-month period, but the 12-week federal period is used to determine when COBRA must be offered. IRS Final Regulations-Interaction of FMLA and
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