By IFAwebnews Staff | November 19, 2013

Some lawmakers in the U.S. House of Representatives are looking to exclude the stop-loss insurance used to back up self-funded benefits plans from the definition of health insurance coverage.

Rep. Bill Cassidy, R-La., introduced the Self-Insurance Protection Act, H.R. 3462, which would amend the Public Health Service Act, the Employee Retirement Income Security Act and the Internal Revenue Code to exclude from the definition of health insurance coverage certain medical stop-loss insurance obtained by sponsors of self-insured group health plans.

Self-funded benefit plans are exempt from many provisions of the Affordable Care Act, and ERISA preempts states from mandating the content of self-funded benefit plans.

The bill is supported by the trade group Self-Insurance Institute of America (SIIA). Its CEO, Mike Ferguson testified recently about the need for this legislation before the House Small Business Subcommittee on Health and Technology. He briefed the House panel on the advantages and disadvantages of self-insurance, how self-insured plans are regulated by multiple federal laws and how stop-loss differs from health insurance.