Expands definition of an independent worker and requirements for an eligible insurer's application.
BILL NUMBER: S7772
TITLE OF BILL :
An act to amend the insurance law, in relation to the definition of an independent worker and requirements for an eligible insurer's application
PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL :
Clarifies the definition of independent worker as it relates to the Freelancers Insurance Company.
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS :
Section 1 clarifies the definition of "independent worker" in Insurance Law § 1123 to include (1) individuals who work full-time for a single employer on a temporary basis and (2) domestic workers such as nannies.
Section 2 permits an eligible association administering this plan to charge a fixed fee to determine eligibility of applicants to the health program.
Section 3 is the effective date.
Independent workers such as part-time workers, temps, freelancers and independent contractors have a particularly difficult time finding affordable health insurance because they cannot get coverage on a group basis through their employer. To address this problem, the legislature enacted A.7949-A (Silver)/S.4602A (Breslin) that creates special demonstration authority for the Insurance Department to permit a health insurer owned by a tax-exempt association of independent workers to offer coverage solely to the association's members, without having to serve the employer-based group health insurance market. A health insurer participating in this program is required to follow all insurance law, including benefit mandates, and report to the Insurance Department which will analyze the impact of the program.
An administrator of this health insurance plan is permitted to charge a reasonable fixed fee for assessing an applicants eligibility for coverage. This fee is necessary to ensure that the administrator can process the applications and will only be assessed when an application is submitted.
This bill would amend Insurance Law §1123, where this insurance demonstration program was enacted, to clarify the definition of "independent worker" to include (1) individuals who work full-time for a single employer on a temporary basis and (2) domestic workers such as nannies. This would insure that all independent workers have access to uninterrupted and affordable health insurance.
PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY :
This is a new bill that makes technical corrections to A.7949-A/S.4602-A/Chapter 447 of 2009.
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS :
EFFECTIVE DATE : This act shall take effect immediately; provided, however, that the amendments to section 1123 of the insurance law made by sections one and two of this act shall not affect the repeal of such section and shall be deemed repealed therewith.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 7772 IN SENATE May 7, 2010 ___________Introduced by Sen. BRESLIN -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Insurance AN ACT to amend the insurance law, in relation to the definition of an independent worker and requirements for an eligible insurer's applica- tion THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. Paragraph 3 of subsection (b) of section 1123 of the insur- ance law, as added by section 447 of the laws of 2009, is amended to read as follows: (3) "Independent worker" means an individual who: (A) is an independ- ent contractor; (B) is self-employed; (C) works part-time; (D) obtains temporary work through an employment agency;
[or](E) performs temporary work for two or more employers simultaneously; (F) IS A DOMESTIC CHILD CARE WORKER; OR (G) WORKS FULL-TIME FOR A SINGLE EMPLOYER ON A TEMPORARY BASIS FOR A PERIOD NOT TO EXCEED EIGHTEEN MONTHS IF SUCH EMPLOYER DOES NOT OFFER GROUP HEALTH INSURANCE COVERAGE TO EMPLOYEES EMPLOYED ON SUCH A TEMPORARY BASIS. An individual is not an independent worker if he or she is employed full-time by a single employer, with the exception of an individual who [obtains full-time temporary work through an employment agency]MEETS THE REQUIREMENTS OF CLAUSE (D), (F) OR (G) OF THIS PARA- GRAPH. S 2. Paragraph 3 of subsection (c) of section 1123 of the insurance law, as added by section 447 of the laws of 2009, is amended to read as follows: (3) Any eligible insurer seeking the superintendent's approval under paragraph two of this subsection shall submit a written request to the superintendent within thirty days of the effective date of this section. The eligible insurer's application shall: specify the identity and composition of the eligible association, the eligible association's membership rules AND ANY MEMBERSHIP FEES CHARGED BY THE ELIGIBLE ASSOCI- ATION, and the terms under which the eligible insurer shall provide group health insurance to the eligible association; demonstrate that the eligible insurer and the eligible association meet the requirements setEXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD17083-01-0 S. 7772 2
forth in this section; and identify the group health insurance policy forms that the eligible insurer will issue to the eligible association. AN ELIGIBLE ASSOCIATION MAY CHARGE INDIVIDUALS REASONABLE APPLICATION AND/OR RENEWAL FEES FOR DETERMINING THE INDIVIDUAL'S INITIAL AND ONGOING ELIGIBILITY FOR GROUP HEALTH INSURANCE OBTAINED BY THE ELIGIBLE ASSOCI- ATION UNDER THIS SECTION. The superintendent shall make a determination on any request within ninety days of receipt of all necessary informa- tion. The superintendent shall issue an approval to only one eligible insurer. S 3. This act shall take effect immediately; provided, however, that the amendments to section 1123 of the insurance law made by sections one and two of this act shall not affect the repeal of such section and shall be deemed repealed therewith.