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On June 18, 2018 Senators Portman (R-OH) and Nelson (D-FL) introduced a bill to amend title XVIII of the Social Security Act to provide for the application of Medicare secondary payer rules to certain workers’ compensation settlement agreements and qualified Medicare set-aside provisions. The proposed legislation (S.3079) was designed to provide specific statutory guidance to CMS in its review of workers’ compensation set-aside determinations. According to Doug Holmes, the President of UWC – Strategic Services on Unemployment & Workers’ Compensation, the bill is the product of discussions with representatives of all the primary stakeholders in the workers’ compensation system, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and congressional staff. Per Mr. Holmes, the legislation would provide for improved administration of Medicare in conjunction with settlements in workers’ compensation cases.
In summary, the legislation seeks to:
o Establish clear criteria in the determination of amounts to be set-aside in workers’ compensation settlements;
o Create legal certainty in determining the amounts to be included in set-asides and that workers’ compensation laws are appropriately followed;
o Provide a right of appeal to CMS determinations for parties to workers’ compensation settlements; and
o Provide an optional direct payment of set-aside amounts to Medicare to speed payments, increase revenue for Medicare, and provide certainty for injured workers.
For more information regarding the bill, Doug Holmes can be contacted directly firstname.lastname@example.org or 202-223-8904.
About the Author
This blog submission was prepared by Mike Fish, an attorney with Fish Nelson & Holden, LLC, a law firm dedicated to representing self-insured employers, insurance carriers, and third party administrators in all matters related to workers’ compensation. Fish Nelson & Holden is a member of the National Workers’ Compensation Defense Network. If you have any questions about this submission or Alabama workers’ compensation in general, please contact Fish by e-mailing him at email@example.com or by calling him directly at 205-332-1448.