58-18-7.5. Continuation of coverage upon leaving employment or termination of coverage by insurer--Duration. Every health benefit program that is self-insured, and every policy of group health insurance providing benefits for hospital or medical expenses delivered or issued for delivery in this state, by a commercial health insurance company, by a nonprofit medical and surgical service plan corporation, by a nonprofit hospital service plan corporation, by a health maintenance organization or by any other similar mechanism shall, in addition to the provisions required by law, include that employees have a right upon leaving employment or the termination of the coverage by the insurer, other than the termination of the policy or contract itself and the replacement thereof by similar coverage, to have the coverage continue for themselves and their eligible dependents for a period of eighteen months for which the employee shall be financially responsible. In the case of a qualified beneficiary who is determined under title II or XVI of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 401) to have been disabled at any time during the first sixty days of continuation coverage, coverage can be continued for twenty-nine months. Nonpayment of the premium by the employer is termination by the employer.
Source: SL 1984, ch 326, § 1; SL 1988, ch 400, § 1; SL 1989, ch 433, § 4; SL 2001, ch 280, § 6.