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Engrossed Version Senate Bill 458 History

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SB458 SUB1 eng


ENGROSSED

COMMITTEE SUBSTITUTE

FOR

Senate Bill No. 458

(By Senators Minard and Kessler)

____________

[Originating in the Committee on Judiciary;

reported February 21, 2002.]

____________

A BILL to amend article twenty-five-a, chapter thirty-three of the code of West Virginia, one thousand nine hundred thirty-one, as amended, by adding thereto a new section, designated section twenty-three-a, relating to the health maintenance organization act; and empowering the commissioner to impose a civil penalty on violators of health maintenance organization contracts as defined in section seven-a of said article.

Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That article twenty-five-a, chapter thirty-three of the code of West Virginia, one thousand nine hundred and thirty-one, as amended, be amended by adding thereto a new section, designated section twenty-three-a, to read as follows:
ARTICLE 25A. HEALTH MAINTENANCE ORGANIZATION ACT.
§33-25A-23a. Civil penalty imposed by commissioner.

Any provider in violation of section seven-a of this article may be subject to a civil money penalty to be imposed by the commissioner. Upon a determination that there is probable cause to believe that any provider has violated section seven-a of this article, the commissioner may provide written notice to the alleged violator, stating the nature of the alleged violation and that failure to refund the amount of any improper billing within thirty days may result in imposition of a civil penalty pursuant to the provisions of this section. If the alleged violator fails to make a refund within thirty days, the commissioner shall issue a written notice of hearing stating the nature of the alleged violation and the time and place at which the alleged violator shall appear to show good cause why a civil penalty should not be imposed: Provided, That if the commissioner has previously found on three occasions that probable cause existed to support a violation, the alleged violator shall not be afforded the opportunity to make a refund before issuance of the notice of hearing for any subsequent violation.
If, after notice and hearing, the commissioner determines that a violation of section seven-a of this article has occurred, the commissioner may assess a civil penalty of not less than the amount charged the subscriber but not more than one thousand dollars. Subsequent violations of section seven-a of this article shall result in fines of not more than two thousand dollars. Any provider so assessed shall be notified of the assessment in writing and the notice shall specify the reasons for the assessment. Any provider may waive the right to a hearing and receive a reduction in penalties of twenty-five percent.

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