Do I have to pay the full amount for health insurance if I am on unpaid medical leave?

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Do I have to pay the full amount for health insurance if I am on unpaid medical leave?

My company does not qualify for FMLA since they have less than 50 employees. I am on unpaid medical leave after brain surgery and they are invoicing me for the full portion of my health insurance, or the portion that they normally pay and the portion I normally pay. I expected to pay the portion I normally pay but is it legal for them to charge me their portion?

Asked on October 27, 2010 under Employment Labor Law, Nebraska

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

I am not sure that it is illegal for them to ask you to pay for it.  Being unpaid may meanthat your employer does not have to pay any portion of your benefits either like 401K contributions, etc.  They may be able to suspend them until you return.  The problem with health insurance - rather than a retirement system - is if you are uninsured for a period of time you can not be re-insured and then you run in to coverage issues.  Plus, you need your insurance while on leave.  I would check with your state Department of Labor on this matter and see what they say.  They can direct you to specific statutes, etc., without having to seek legal counsel.  Good luck.


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