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Section: Coverage for certain dependents until age 31 by small employer health benefits plan.

Statute: 17B:27A-19.16

5. a. As used in this section, "dependent" means a covered person's child by blood or by law who: (1) is 30 years of age or younger; (2) is unmarried; (3) has no dependent of his own; (4) is a resident of this State or is enrolled as a full-time student at an accredited public or private institution of higher education; and (5) (a) is not actually provided coverage as a named subscriber, insured, enrollee, or covered person under any other group or individual health benefits plan, group health plan, church plan or health benefits plan, or entitled to benefits under Title XVIII of the Social Security Act, Pub.L.74-271 (42 U.S.C. s.1395 et seq.) at the time dependent coverage pursuant to this section begins or will begin; and (b) there is evidence of prior, creditable coverage or receipt of benefits under a benefits plan or by law as set forth in subparagraph (a) of this paragraph. b. (1) A small employer health benefits plan that provides coverage for a covered person's dependent under which coverage of the dependent terminates at a specific age on or before the dependent's 30th birthday, and is delivered, issued, executed or renewed in this State pursuant to P.L.1992, c.162 (C.17B:27A-17 et seq.) or approved for issuance or renewal in this State by the Commissioner of Banking and Insurance on or after the effective date of this section of P.L.2008, c.38, shall, upon application of the dependent as set forth in subsection c. of this section, provide coverage to the dependent after that specific age, until the dependent's 31st birthday. (2) Nothing herein shall be construed to require: (a) coverage for services provided to a dependent before the effective date of this section of P.L.2008, c.38; or (b) that an employer pay all or part of the cost of coverage for a dependent as provided pursuant to this section. c. (1) A dependent covered by a covered person's plan, which coverage under the plan terminates at a specific age on or before the dependent's 30th birthday, may make a written election for coverage as a dependent pursuant to this section, until the dependent's 30th birthday: (a) within 30 days prior to the termination of coverage at the specific age provided in the plan; (b) within 30 days after meeting the requirements for dependent status as set forth in subsection a. of this section, when coverage for the dependent under the plan previously terminated; or (c) during a 30-day period in each year following the year coverage terminates at the specific age as provided in the plan, which period shall begin on the anniversary date on which the dependent's coverage terminates at the specific age as provided in the plan, if the dependent meets the requirements for dependent status as set forth in subsection a. of this section during the 30-day period. (2) (Deleted by amendment, P.L.2008, c.38) d. (1) Coverage for a dependent who makes a written election for coverage pursuant to subsection c. of this section shall consist of coverage which is identical to the coverage provided to that dependent prior to the termination of coverage at the specific age provided in the plan. If coverage is modified under the plan for any similarly situated dependents for coverage prior to the termination of coverage at the specific age provided in the plan, the coverage shall also be modified in the same manner for the dependent. (2) Coverage for a dependent who makes a written election for coverage pursuant to subsection c. of this section shall not be conditioned upon, or discriminate on the basis of, lack of evidence of insurability. e. (1) The covered person's plan may require payment of a premium by the covered person or dependent, as appropriate, subject to the approval of the Commissioner of Banking and Insurance, for any period of coverage relating to a dependent's written election for coverage pursuant to subsection c. of this section. The premium shall not exceed 102% of the applicable portion of the premium previously paid for that dependent's coverage under the plan prior to the termination of coverage at the specific age provided in the plan. (2) The applicable portion of the premium previously paid for the dependent's coverage under the plan shall be determined pursuant to regulations promulgated by the Commissioner of Banking and Insurance, based upon the difference between the plan's rating tiers for adult and dependent coverage or family coverage, as appropriate, and single coverage, or based upon any other formula or dependent rating tier deemed appropriate by the commissioner which provides a substantially similar result. (3) Payments of the premium may, at the election of the payor, be made in monthly installments. f. Coverage for a dependent provided pursuant to this section shall be provided until the earlier of the following: (1) the date upon which the dependent is disqualified for dependent status as set forth in subsection a. of this section; (2) the date upon which coverage ceases under the plan by reason of a failure to make a timely payment of any premium required under the plan by the covered person or dependent for coverage provided pursuant to this section. The payment of any premium shall be considered to be timely if made within 30 days after the due date or within a longer period as may be provided for by the plan; or (3) the date upon which the plan, under which coverage is provided to a dependent, ceases to provide coverage to the covered person. Nothing herein shall be construed to permit a carrier to refuse a written election for coverage by a dependent pursuant to subsection c. of this section, based upon the dependent's prior disqualification pursuant to paragraph (1) of this subsection, other than a disqualification based on age or lack of evidence of prior, creditable coverage or receipt of benefits. g. Notice regarding coverage for a dependent as provided pursuant to this section shall be provided to a covered person by the carrier: (1) in the certificate of coverage or other equivalent document prepared for covered persons and delivered on or about the date of commencement of the covered persons' coverage; and (2) (Deleted by amendment, P.L.2008, c.38) (3) in a notice delivered to covered persons on a quarterly basis. h. This section shall apply to those plans in which the carrier has reserved the right to change the premium. L.2005, c.375, s.5; amended 2008, c.38, s.33.

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