Read 1st time January 31, 2000, and 1000 copies ordered printed.
ANNE C. WALKER, Chief Clerk
To repeal section 376.893, RSMo Supp. 1999, relating to continuation of spousal insurance coverage, and to enact in lieu thereof two new sections relating to the same subject.
Section A. Section 376.893, RSMo Supp. 1999, is repealed and two new sections enacted in lieu thereof, to be known as sections 376.893 and 376.895, to read as follows:
376.893. 1. Within sixty days of legal separation or the entry of a decree of dissolution of marriage or prior to the expiration of a thirty-six month federal Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA) continuation period covering a legally separated or divorced spouse, if such spouse has elected and maintained such COBRA coverage, a legally separated or divorced spouse eligible for continued coverage [under] pursuant to section 376.892 who seeks such coverage shall give the plan administrator written notice of the legal separation or dissolution. The notice shall include the mailing address of the legally separated or divorced spouse.
2. Within thirty days of the death of a certificate holder whose surviving spouse is eligible for continued coverage [under] pursuant to section 376.892 or prior to the expiration of a thirty-six month federal Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA) continuation period covering such surviving spouse, if such spouse has elected and maintained such COBRA coverage, the group policyholder shall give the plan administrator written notice of the death and of the mailing address of the surviving spouse.
3. Within fourteen days of receipt of notice [under] pursuant to subsection 1 or 2 of this section, the plan administrator shall notify the legally separated, divorced or surviving spouse that the policy may be continued. The notice shall be mailed to the mailing address provided to the plan administrator and shall include:
(1) A form for election to continue the coverage;
(2) A statement of the amount of periodic premiums to be charged for the continuation of coverage and of the method and place of payment; [and]
(3) Instructions for returning the election form by mail within sixty days after the date of mailing of the notice by the plan administrator; and
(4) Notice that if insurance is continued the insurer is required to provide both parents of a covered child with coverage information regardless of whether the parent is the primary policyholder pursuant to section 376.895.
4. Failure of the legally separated, divorced or surviving spouse to exercise the election in accordance with subsection 3 of this section shall terminate the right to continuation of benefits.
5. If a plan administrator was properly notified pursuant to the provisions of subsection 1 or 2 of this section and fails to notify the legally separated, divorced or surviving spouse as required by subsection 3 of this section, such spouse's coverage shall continue in effect, and such spouse's obligation to make any premium payment for continuation coverage [under] pursuant to sections 376.891 to 376.894 shall be postponed for the period of time beginning on the date the spouse's coverage would otherwise terminate and ending thirty-one days after the date the plan administrator provides the required notice. Failure or delay by a plan administrator in providing the notice required by this section shall not reduce, eliminate or postpone the plan sponsor's obligation to pay premiums on behalf of such legally separated, divorced or surviving spouse to the plan administrator during such period.
6. The provisions of sections 376.891 to 376.894 apply only to employers with twenty or more employees and any policy, contract or plan with twenty or more certificate holders.
376.895. Any insurer providing coverage for a child with parents who are legally separated or divorced shall
provide coverage information regarding such child to both parents regardless of whether the inquiring parent is
the primary policyholder. If coverage for the child is terminated, the insurer shall notify the parent who is not
the primary policyholder of such termination of coverage within ten days.