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County Employee Equal access to group health insurance Tennessee

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  • County Employee Equal access to group health insurance Tennessee

    Location: Tennessee
    County Government Employment

    Recently my wife lost her job through a reduction in force with her employer. As of the 28th of February we will lose our family health coverage. Like many Americans the cost of health insurance is our of our reach without access to a group plan. Though employes of the Sheriff's Office including the Sheriff himself are denied access to a group plan, the county owned and run nursing home and the board of education have access to a group plan.

    When I asked the county mayors office about access to a group plan I was told that it was the county commissions decision to not provide healthcare.

    We are not being discriminated against based on age, race, disability, etc. We are just being told that we can not have access to the same coverages as other employees enjoy.

    Calls to the State of Tennessee have been unproductive. Though pleasant, the persons with whom I have spoken were unable to direct me to someone knowledgable about the rules governing equal access to benefits by county employees.

    The county government has allowed the teachers and healthcare workers access to a group plan while the rest of us are denied equal access.

    Is this something that any of you have dealt with in your communities? What were the outcomes?

  • #2
    Please clarify for me..does the County offer any group plan or have they discontinued it? Was your wife previously covered under a group plan?
    If they have a plan and she was previously covered, you will be eligible for COBRA. You will have to pay the full premium but it will be the same rate as your employer pays.
    I find that the harder I work, the more luck I seem to have.
    Thomas Jefferson

    Comment


    • #3
      It is a myth that if one employee, or one group of employees, is offered a benefit, then it must be offered to all employees (or groups of employees). If there is no policy available to the Sheriff's office employees, it doesn't matter if there is a policy offered to teachers or nursing home employees. The law does not require that all groups of county employees be offered the same benefits.

      As Betty explained, if your wife was on a group health plan previously she will be eligible for COBRA.
      The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

      Comment


      • #4
        The way I'm reading this is that he works for the sheriff's department and does not have access to a health plan through his employment. The family was covered through the wife's employer, however, she has been laid off. But the poster will have to clarify, since it's not clear who works for the sheriff's department.

        Unfortunately, I have to agree with the two previous responders. The reason you can't find rules regarding this is that there are none.
        I am not able to respond to private messages. Thanks!

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by cbg View Post
          As Betty explained, if your wife was on a group health plan previously she will be eligible for COBRA.
          Thanks for giving me credit but it was Morgana.
          Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

          Live in peace with animals. Animals bring love to our hearts and warmth to our souls.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Marketeer View Post
            The way I'm reading this is that he works for the sheriff's department and does not have access to a health plan through his employment. The family was covered through the wife's employer, however, she has been laid off. But the poster will have to clarify, since it's not clear who works for the sheriff's department.

            Unfortunately, I have to agree with the two previous responders. The reason you can't find rules regarding this is that there are none.
            Correct, I work for the Sheriff's Office.

            Comment


            • #7
              There is no law that is going to force the county to provide health insurance to the employees of the Sheriff's office, even if they provide it to teachers and nursing home employees.
              The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by cbg View Post
                There is no law that is going to force the county to provide health insurance to the employees of the Sheriff's office, even if they provide it to teachers and nursing home employees.
                I thank each of you for your input, other than finding a new employer what are some options available to our employees and myself. Can a group within government or a single branch seek it's own coverage?

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Betty3 View Post
                  Thanks for giving me credit but it was Morgana.
                  I'm honored to be confused with Betty...although we do look a lot alike (G)
                  I find that the harder I work, the more luck I seem to have.
                  Thomas Jefferson

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Morgana View Post
                    I'm honored to be confused with Betty...although we do look a lot alike (G)
                    & think the same a lot. We're almost twins.
                    Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

                    Live in peace with animals. Animals bring love to our hearts and warmth to our souls.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Hantac View Post
                      I thank each of you for your input, other than finding a new employer what are some options available to our employees and myself. Can a group within government or a single branch seek it's own coverage?
                      If the school board and the nursing home can independently seek coverage for their employees, I don't see why your agency couldn't do so as well. Whether you can find an insurer willing to write a plan for your group at a rate that is acceptable to all parties concerned is another question.
                      I am not able to respond to private messages. Thanks!

                      Comment

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