Health Insurance and Required Conformity with Federal Law

On May 25, 2017, Maryland Governor Larry Hogan signed legislation (H.B. 123), which amends current law as follows:

  • Alters the length of a policy term and the information provided in the notice for short-term medical insurance procured from a non-admitted insurer.
  • Applies provisions of the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act relating to preventive and wellness services and chronic disease management and alters provisions of law relating to special enrollment periods in the small employer health insurance market.
  • Authorizes dependents of domestic violence victims to enroll in a health plan outside the plan of the perpetrator of the abuse.
  • Adds a definition of short-term limited duration insurance and alters the definition of health benefit plan for the individual health insurance market.
  • Alters the scope of supplemental coverage under a group health plan.
  • Prohibits a carrier from canceling or refusing to renew an individual health benefit because an eligible individual is entitled to or enrolled in Medicare.
  • Requires an entity that leases employees from certain organizations or co-employers to be treated as a small employer to the extent permitted by federal law.
  • Provides that a carrier will not be considered as failing to renew a health benefit plan if it complies with federal regulations on guaranteed renewability.
  • Alters definitions to conform to guaranteed renewability provisions in the federal regulations.

The law is effective June 1, 2017.

Read MD H.B. 123

Public School Employee Whistleblower Act

On May 25, 2017, Maryland Governor Larry Hogan signed legislation (H.B. 1145) protecting public school employees by prohibiting a public school employer from taking personnel actions as a reprisal for an employee’s whistleblowing. These protections only apply if the whistleblower has a good faith belief that the employer is engaged or has engaged in unlawful activity and that the unlawful activity poses a substantial and specific danger to public health or safety.

The law is effective October 1, 2017.

Read MD H.B. 1145

Montgomery County Updates Earned Sick and Safe Leave Poster

Montgomery County has updated its poster regarding the Earned Sick and Safe Leave Law, which became effective October 1, 2016. As explained on the updated poster, the law requires employers to provide each employee with earned sick and safe leave for work performed in Montgomery County, Maryland. Employers may provide notice of the law by any of the following methods:

  • Displaying the poster or another notice containing the same information in a conspicuous and accessible area at each of the employer’s work locations in the county.
  • Including the poster or another notice containing the same information in an employee handbook or other written guidance distributed to all employees.
  • Distributing the poster or another notice containing the same information to each employee when the employee is hired.

The updated poster includes the following revised information:

  • Employers are not required to let employees accrue or use more hours of paid and unpaid leave than legally permitted.
  • Leave must be used within one year and may be used to care for a newborn, newly adopted child, or newly placed foster child.

Read the Montgomery County, Maryland Earned Sick and Safe Leave Law poster