Early in November 2010, I hired 2 people. One on the second and one on the 5th. HR has always told us (operations) that there is a 30 day waiting period before coverage goes into effect. Until now there's never been a complaint so what happens next has me wondering.

On Dec 14, one of the employees called HR to get some sort of confirmation of coverage as they had received nothing. He was told that because he signed up after the first of the month (nov), that insurance would not go into effect until Jan 1, 2011. This was the employee hired on Nov 2. When I asked HR seems that it is the same situation with the other employee hired on Nov 5.

Their response to me was that had these people been hired on Oct 31, they would have had coverage starting Dec 1, but because it was on or after the 1st of the month it would not go into effect until Jan 1. They said ALL insurance companies work that way and that it is perfectly normal. Absolutes always concern me outside of law - which for all I know this may be....

Like I said, we've never run into this before, so I'm wondering why now? What I do know is that our open enrollment ends on Dec 31 and we will have a new carrier on Jan 1. Our accounting and HR dept, as many will bend their way around money any way they possibly can. The first thing that popped into my mind was that they were trying to find a way not to pay for insurance for these employees for the month of December. I hope I'm wrong. Essentially, there was no reason to even have them fill out the current insurance paper work and we could have waited until open enrollment started. It also struck me as odd that this was never mention when the paperwork was submitted - if this rule is so common, they should have known the enrollement forms were worthless.

Can anyone explain this to me? If needed, I'll clarify any way that I can. Thanks.