Wis. Admin. Code Office of the Commissioner of InsuranceIns 3.40 app A

Current through November 29, 2021

Model COB Provision

This appendix provides model COB provision language. The terms and conditions of all insurance contracts containing a COB provision must comply with Ins 3.40

COORDINATION OF THE GROUP CONTRACT'S BENEFITS WITH OTHER BENEFITS

(I) Applicability.

(A) This Coordination of Benefits ("COB") provision applies to This Plan when an employee or the employee's covered dependent has health care coverage under more than one Plan. "Plan" and "This Plan" are defined below.

(B) If this COB provision applies, the order of benefit determination rules shall be looked at first. The rules determine whether the benefits of This Plan are determined before or after those of another Plan. The benefits of This Plan:

(i) shall not be reduced when, under the order of benefit determination rules, This Plan determines its benefits before another Plan; but

(ii) may be reduced when, under the order of benefit determination rules, another Plan determines its benefits first. This reduction is described in Section (IV) Effect on the Benefits of This Plan.

II Definitions.

(A) "Allowable Expense" means a necessary, reasonable, and customary item of expense for health care, when the item of expense is covered at least in part by one or more Plans covering the person for whom the claim is made. The difference between the cost of a private hospital room and the cost of a semi-private hospital room is not considered an Allowable Expense unless the patient's stay in a private hospital room is medically necessary either in terms of generally accepted medical practice or as specifically defined in the Plan. When a Plan provides benefits in the form of services, the reasonable cash value of each service rendered shall be considered both an Allowable Expense and a benefit paid.

(B) "Claim Determination Period" means a calendar year. However, it does not include any part of a year during which a person has no coverage under This Plan or any part of a year before the date this COB provision or a similar provision takes effect.

(C) "Plan" means any of the following which provides benefits or services for, or because of, medical or dental care or treatment:

(i) Group insurance or group-type coverage, whether insured or uninsured, that includes continuous 24-hour coverage. This includes prepayment, group practice or individual practice coverage. It also includes coverage other than school accident-type coverage.

(ii) Coverage under a governmental plan or coverage that is required or provided by law. This does not include a state plan under Medicaid (Title XIX, Grants to States for Medical Assistance Programs, of the United States Social Security Act as amended from time to time). It also does not include any plan whose benefits, by law, are excess to those of any private insurance program or other non-governmental program. Each contract or other arrangement for coverage under (i) or (ii) is a separate Plan. If an arrangement has two parts and COB rules apply only to one of the two, each of the parts is a separate Plan.

(D) "Primary Plan"/"Secondary Plan." The order of benefit determination rules state whether This Plan is a Primary Plan or Secondary Plan as to another Plan covering the person.

When This Plan is a Secondary Plan, its benefits are determined after those of the other Plan and may be reduced because of the other Plan's benefits.

When This Plan is a Primary Plan, its benefits are determined before those of the other Plan and without considering the other Plan's benefits.

When there are more than two Plans covering the person, This Plan may be a Primary Plan as to one or more other Plans and may be a Secondary Plan as to a different Plan or Plans.

(E) "This Plan" means the part of the group contract that provides benefits for health care expenses.

(III) Order of benefit determination rules.

(A)General. When there is a basis for a claim under This Plan and another Plan, This Plan is a Secondary Plan which has its benefits determined after those of the other Plan, unless:

(i) the other Plan has rules coordinating its benefits with those of This Plan; and

(ii) both those rules and This Plan's rules described in subparagraph (B) require that This Plan's benefits be determined before those of the other Plan.

(B)Rules. This plan determines its order of benefits using the first of the following rules which applies:

(i)Non-dependent/Dependent. The benefits of the Plan which covers the person as an employee, member or subscriber are determined before those of the Plan which covers the person as a dependent of an employee, member or subscriber.

(ii)Dependent Child/Parents Not Separated or Divorced. Except as stated in subparagraph (B) (iii), when This Plan and another Plan cover the same child as a dependent of different persons, called "parents:"

a. the benefits of the Plan of the parent whose birthday falls earlier in the calendar year are determined before those of the Plan of the parent whose birthday falls later in that calendar year; but

b. if both parents have the same birthday, the benefits of the Plan which covered the parent longer are determined before those of the Plan which covered the other parent for a shorter period of time.

However, if the other Plan does not have the rule described in a. but instead has a rule based upon the gender of the parent, and if, as a result, the Plans do not agree on the order of benefits, the rule in the other Plan shall determine the order of benefits.

(iii)Dependent Child/Separated or Divorced Parents. If two or more Plans cover a person as a dependent child of divorced or separated parents, benefits for the child are determined in this order:

a. first, the Plan of the parent with custody of the child;

b. then, the Plan of the spouse of the parent with the custody of the child; and

c. finally, the Plan of the parent not having custody of the child.

Also, if the specific terms of a court decree state that the parents have joint custody of the child and do not specify that one parent has responsibility for the child's health care expenses or if the court decree states that both parents shall be responsible for the health care needs of the child but gives physical custody of the child to one parent, and the entities obligated to pay or provide the benefits of the respective parents' Plans have actual knowledge of those terms, benefits for the dependent child shall be determined according to (III) (B) (ii).

However, if the specific terms of a court decree state that one of the parents is responsible for the health care expenses of the child, and the entity obligated to pay or provide the benefits of the Plan of that parent has actual knowledge of those terms, the benefits of that Plan are determined first. This paragraph does not apply with respect to any Claim Determination Period or plan year during which any benefits are actually paid or provided before the entity has that actual knowledge.

(iv)Active/Inactive Employee. The benefits of a Plan which covers a person as an employee who is neither laid off nor retired or as that employee's dependent are determined before those of a Plan which covers that person as a laid off or retired employee or as that employee's dependent. If the other Plan does not have this rule and if, as a result, the Plans do not agree on the order of benefits, this rule (iv) is ignored.

Note: If a dependent is a Medicare beneficiary and if, under the Social Security Act of 1965 as amended, Medicare is secondary to the plan covering the person as a dependent of an active employee, the federal Medicare regulations shall supersede this paragraph (iv).

(v)Continuation coverage.

a. If a person has continuation coverage under federal or state law and is also covered under another plan, the following shall determine the order of benefits:

i. First, the benefits of a plan covering the person as an employee, member or subscriber or as a dependent of an employee, member or subscriber.

ii. Second, the benefits under the continuation coverage.

b. If the other plan does not have the rule described in subparagraph a., and if, as a result, the plans do not agree on the order of benefits, this paragraph (v) is ignored.

(vi)Longer/Shorter Length of Coverage. If none of the above rules determines the order of benefits, the benefits of the Plan which covered an employee, member or subscriber longer are determined before those of the Plan which covered that person for the shorter time.

(IV) Effect on the benefits of this plan.

(A)When This Section Applies. This Section (IV) applies when, in accordance with Section (III) Order of Benefit Determination Rules, This Plan is a Secondary Plan as to one or more other Plans. In that event the benefits of This Plan may be reduced under this section. Such other Plan or Plans are referred to as "the other Plans" in (B).

(B)Reduction in This Plan's Benefits. The benefits of This Plan will be reduced when the sum of the following exceeds the Allowable Expenses in a Claim Determination Period:

(i) the benefits that would be payable for the Allowable Expenses under This Plan in the absence of this COB provision; and

(ii) the benefits that would be payable for the Allowable Expenses under the other Plans, in the absence of provisions with a purpose like that of this COB provision, whether or not claim is made. Under this provision, the benefits of This Plan will be reduced so that they and the benefits payable under the other Plans do not total more than those Allowable Expenses.

When the benefits of This Plan are reduced as described above, each benefit is reduced in proportion. It is then charged against any applicable benefit limit of This Plan.

Note: The last paragraph may be omitted if the Plan provides only one benefit or may be altered to suit the coverage provided.

(V) Right to receive and release needed information. The [name of insurance company] has the right to decide the facts it needs to apply these COB rules. It may get needed facts from or give them to any other organization or person without the consent of the insured but only as needed to apply these COB rules. Medical records remain confidential as provided by state law. Each person claiming benefits under This Plan must give the [name of insurance company] any facts it needs to pay the claim.

(VI) Facility of payment. A payment made under another Plan may include an amount which should have been paid under This Plan. If it does, The [name of insurance company] may pay that amount to the organization which made that payment. That amount will then be treated as though it were a benefit paid under This Plan. The [name of insurance company] will not have to pay that amount again. The term "payment made" means reasonable cash value of the benefits provided in the form of services.

(VII) Right of recovery. If the amount of the payments made by the [name of insurance company] is more than it should have paid under this COB provision, it may recover the excess from one or more of:

(A) the persons it has paid or for whom it has paid;

(B) insurance companies; or

(C) other organizations.

The "amount of the payments made" includes the reasonable cash value of any benefits provided in the form of services.

Notes

Wis. Admin. Code Office of the Commissioner of InsuranceIns 3.40 app A

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