House passes stop-loss health insurance bill for small businesses

The U.S. House passed, by an overwhelming majority, legislation designed to block federal efforts to regulate small health insurance stop-loss plans.

Members of the House voted 400-16 for the Self-Insurance Protection Act bill.

The bill, H.R. 1304, would block federal efforts to regulate small stop-loss plans as health insurance by excluding the plans from the federal definition of “health insurance coverage.”

All 230 of the Republicans who voted supported passage.

Just 16 of the 186 Democrats who participated opposed passage; the other 170 joined with Republicans to support passage.

Some consumer groups, regulators, insurers and others have suggested that very small employers may be making more use of self-insurance to avoid Affordable Care Act benefits requirements, consumer protection requirements and other requirements. Observers have said that those may be using stop-loss insurance arrangements with attachment points, or deductibles, of $50,000 or less as if the arrangements were high-deductible major medical coverage, without understanding that stop-loss carriers operate outside the rules that apply to major medical coverage.

Read the full story at ThinkAdvisor: House Passes Stop-Loss Definition Bill by Huge Margin


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