In 2013, the District of Columbia passed legislation mandating that all DC-based small businesses (50 or fewer employees) must use the DC Health Link (DCHL) to purchase group medical coverage for employees. The DCHL is DC’s public exchange that was established under federal health care reform.
The legislation required first-time employer coverage to be placed through the DCHL starting with effective dates of January 1, 2014 and forward. A transition period allowed small employers who were already providing health coverage to delay placing their coverage through the DCHL until plan renewal dates of January 1, 2015 and forward.
Once an employer offers coverage through the DCHL, the DCHL is responsible for tracking eligibility, billing and receiving premium, and transmitting enrollment information to the carriers. Both the DCHL and insurance carriers are concerned about the DCHL’s ability to handle the heavy volume of transactions expected in 2015. Therefore, the DCHL has now agreed to allow DC small employers to continue to renew health insurance coverage directly with their in-force carriers throughout the 2015 calendar year.
DC small employers that change health insurance carriers in 2015 will be required to place their new coverage through the DCHL.
If you have any questions, please call your Keller account team.