|(a) A small employer carrier may elect to refuse to renew all small employer health benefit plans delivered or issued for delivery by the small employer carrier in this state or in a geographic service area approved under the Insurance Code, Article 26.22. The small employer carrier shall notify the commissioner of the election not later than the 180th day before the date coverage under the first small employer health benefit plan terminates under the Insurance Code, Article 26.24(a). (b) The small employer carrier must notify each affected covered small employer not later than the 180th day before the date on which coverage terminates for that small employer. (c) A small employer carrier that elects under the Insurance Code, Article 26.24(a), to refuse to renew all small employer health benefit plans in this state or in an approved geographic service area may not write a new small employer health benefit plan in this state or in the geographic service area, as applicable, before the fifth anniversary of the date of notice to the commissioner under the Insurance Code, Article 26.24(a). (d) A small employer carrier that elects not to renew under the Insurance Code, Article 26.24, and this section may not resume offering health benefit plans to small employers in this state or in the geographic area for which the election was made until it has filed a petition with the commissioner to be reinstated as a small employer carrier and the petition has been approved by the commissioner or the commissioner's designee. In reviewing the petition, the commissioner may ask for such information and assurances as the commissioner finds reasonable and appropriate. (e) A small employer carrier may elect to discontinue a particular type of small employer coverage only if the small employer carrier: (1) before the 90th day preceding the date of the discontinuation of the coverage: (A) provides notice of the discontinuation to each employer and the department; and (B) offers to each employer the option to purchase other small employer coverage offered by the small employer carrier at the time of the discontinuation; and (2) acts uniformly without regard to the claims experience of the employer or any health status related factors of employees or dependents or new employees or dependents who may become eligible for the coverage. (f) This section does not exempt a health carrier from any other legal requirements, such as those contained in Insurance Code Article 21.49-2C, §26.14(a) of this chapter (relating to Coverage) and §§7.1801, et seq. of this title (relating to Withdrawal Plan Requirements and Procedures), or requirements for discontinuation of certain plans under this chapter.
|Source Note: The provisions of this §26.16 adopted to be effective April 9, 1996, 21 TexReg 2648; amended to be effective March 5, 1998, 23 TexReg 2297; amended to be effective April 6, 2005, 30 TexReg 1931