(Columbus, OH – Insurance News 360) – The Ohio budget bill provides new employee health insurance options for business owners who seek employee insurance through Multiple Employer Welfare Arrangements (MEWAs). These arrangements allow different employers to join in purchasing health insurance. These arrangements are not new to the state of Ohio.
The newly approved state budget bill modernized statutes for MEWAs. Some of the changes include that these arrangements must have additional capital and surplus and an addition of disclosure requirements for employers. Legislators also approved consumer protection provisions, including who can sponsor a MEWA.
“We broadened the definition of who can sponsor a MEWA in order to give Ohio businesses more options,” said Lt. Governor Mary Taylor. “At the same time we have enhanced financial requirements for MEWAs to strengthen consumer protections to ensure common sense regulation.”
Taylor serves as Director of the Ohio Department of Insurance.
MEWA provisions in the budget bill include:
Expansion of types of entities allowed to sponsor MEWAs
Strengthened consumer safeguards require financial reserves for each MEWA. The minimum surplus is now $500,000. MEWAs must meet the same risk-based capital requirements as life and health insurers.
Requirement that annual certification of premium rates are filed with and approved by the Ohio Department of Insurance.
Representatives of eligible entities interested in forming a MEWA and business owners who want to learn more about MEWAs can call the Ohio Department of Insurance at 614-728-1074.
Source: Ohio Department of Insurance.