Responsibilities of carrier relative to inadvertent out-of-network services
This entire statute falls under the category “Out-of-Network Payment Issues.” See the bold language below to find the text falling under “Prompt Payment Deadlines.”
9. Notwithstanding any law, rule, or regulation to the contrary:
a. With respect to a carrier, if a covered person receives inadvertent out-of-network services, or services at an in-network or out-of-network health care facility on an emergency or urgent basis, the carrier shall ensure that the covered person incurs no greater out-of-pocket costs than the covered person would have incurred with an in-network health care provider for covered services. Pursuant to sections 7 and 8 of this act, the out-of-network provider shall not bill the covered person, except for applicable deductible, copayment, or coinsurance amounts that would apply if the covered person utilized an in-network health care provider for the covered services. In the case of services provided to a member of a self-funded plan that does not elect to be subject to the provisions of this section, the provider shall be permitted to bill the covered person in excess of the applicable deductible, copayment, or coinsurance amounts.
b. (1) With respect to inadvertent out-of-network services, or services at an in-network or out-of-network health care facility on an emergency or urgent basis, benefits provided by a carrier that the covered person receives for health care services shall be assigned to the out-of-network health care provider, which shall require no action on the part of the covered person. Once the benefit is assigned as provided in this subsection:
(a) any reimbursement paid by the carrier shall be paid directly to the out-of-network provider; and
(b) the carrier shall provide the out-of-network provider with a written remittance of payment that specifies the proposed reimbursement and the applicable deductible, copayment, or coinsurance amounts owed by the covered person.
(2) An entity providing or administering a self-funded health benefits plan that elects to participate in this section pursuant to subsection d. of this section, shall comply with the provisions of paragraph (1) of this subsection.
Prompt Payment Deadlines
c. If inadvertent out-of-network services or services provided at an in-network or out-of-network health care facility on an emergency or urgent basis are performed in accordance with subsection a. of this section, the out-of-network provider may bill the carrier for the services rendered. The carrier may pay the billed amount or the carrier shall determine within 20 days from the date of the receipt of the claim for the services whether the carrier considers the claim to be excessive, and if so, the carrier shall notify the provider of this determination within 20 days of the receipt of the claim. If the carrier provides this notification, the carrier and the provider shall have 60 days from the date of this notification to negotiate a settlement. The carrier may attempt to negotiate a final reimbursement amount with the out-of-network health care provider which differs from the amount paid by the carrier pursuant to this subsection. If there is no settlement reached after the 60 days, the carrier shall pay the provider their final offer for the services. If the carrier and provider cannot agree on the final offer as a reimbursement rate for these services, the carrier, provider, or covered person, as applicable, may initiate binding arbitration within 60 days of the final offer, pursuant to section 10 or 11 of this act. In addition, in the event that arbitration is initiated pursuant to section 10 of this act, the payment shall be subject to the binding arbitration provisions of paragraphs (4) and (5) of subsection b. of section 10 of this act.
d. With respect to an entity providing or administering a self-funded health benefits plan and its plan members, this section shall only apply if the plan elects to be subject to the provisions of this section. To elect to be subject to the provisions of this section, the self-funded plan shall provide notice, on an annual basis, to the department, on a form and in a manner prescribed by the department, attesting to the plan’s participation and agreeing to be bound by the provisions of this section. The self-funded plan shall amend the employee benefit plan, coverage policies, contracts and any other plan documents to reflect that the benefits of this section shall apply to the plan’s members.
L.2018, c.32, s.9; amended 2022, c.74, s.1.