Health Care and Life Sciences > Health Reform Resource Center > New Guidance on Waivers to Annual Limit Minimums for Limited Benefit Health Care Plans
03 Sep '10

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued guidance on September 3, 2010 explaining how limited benefit or “mini-med” plans can obtain waivers to the Affordable Care Act’s restrictions on annual limits on essential benefits, as described in the HHS Interim Final Regulations published on June 28, 2010.  An eligible group health plan or insurer may apply for a waiver not less than 30 days before the beginning of the plan or policy year (and not less than 10 days before the beginning of the year for plans or policies beginning before November 2, 2010).  The waiver application has to include the terms of the plan or policy, the number of individuals covered, the annual limits and rates, a brief description of why compliance with the Interim Final Regulations would result in a significant decrease in access to benefits or significant increase in premiums, and an attestation certifying that the plan was in force prior to September 23, 2010, and that compliance would result in a significant decrease in access to benefits or significant increase in premiums.  HHS will process complete waiver applications within 30 days and no later than five days ahead of for plan or policy years beginning before November 2, 2010.  The waiver guidance is available at the HHS website.