Information contained in this publication is intended for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice or opinion, nor is it a substitute for the professional judgment of an attorney.
The Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) Office of Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight (OCIIO) has announced that it will begin accepting applications for the Early Retiree Reinsurance Program (ERRP). This temporary cost assistance program was instituted as part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, the health care overhaul bill signed into law on March 23. The ERRP provides $5 billion in temporary financial help for employer health plans that continue to provide health coverage to “early retirees,” defined as individuals age 55 and older who are neither active employees nor eligible for Medicare. Funds will be available until the earlier of 2014 or until the $5 billion is depleted. These plans can receive reimbursement for a portion of medical, surgical, hospital, and prescription drug costs. Such payments will be excluded from gross income, but must be used to lower health costs for enrollees.
Employer plans are eligible to receive up to 80% of costs, less negotiated price concessions, for health benefits between $15,000 and $90,000. As stated in the HHS press release, ERRP participants will be able to submit claims for medical care retroactive to June 1, 2010. More information on the ERRP and application forms can be found at the OCIIO’s web page.
This entry was written by Ilyse Schuman.
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