OR State Updates - 2015 Jan 20 No.01

On Oct. 14, 2015, the Oregon Insurance Division informally announced their intent to adopt a temporary rule on the definition of small employer in response to the passage of the federal PACE Act (HR 1624). Legislation passed (HB 2466) during the 2015 Oregon Legislative session amended the state’s definition of small employer to match the federal definition of 1-100 employees. However, the state legislation granted rulemaking authority to the Oregon Insurance Division in the event that the federal departments of HHS, DOL or the Treasury issued guidance or otherwise changed the definition.

As a result of the change in the federal definition under the PACE Act (allowing the states to decide their own small group sizes) the Oregon Insurance Division announced their intent to amend the definition of ‘small employer’ as defined in Oregon statutes. This means there will be no change to the current definition in Oregon. As a result, on Jan. 1, 2016, “small employer” will continue to be defined as an employer that employs 1 to 50 employees. Therefore there is no need for expanded transitional health benefit plans (previously authorized by HB 2466) and the temporary rule regarding transitional health plans will be rescinded (ID 10-2015).

On Oct. 16, 2015, the temporary rule was posted to the Insurance Division webpage. The Oregon Insurance Department expects to issue permanent rules after consideration by the Healthcare Reform Rulemaking Advisory Committee. The temporary rule is effective immediately.

Guidance on Definition of Small Employer »
Temporary Rule »
Revised Counting Methodology »