(1) Except as otherwise provided by this section, any group health maintenance agreement that provides benefits for hospital or medical care must contain a provision granting a person covered by the group agreement the right to obtain a conversion agreement from the health maintenance organization upon termination of the person's eligibility for coverage under the group agreement.
(2) A health maintenance organization need not offer a conversion agreement to:
(a) A person whose coverage under the group agreement ended when the person's employment or membership was terminated for misconduct: PROVIDED, That when a person's employment or membership is terminated for misconduct, a conversion policy shall be offered to the spouse and/or dependents of the terminated employee or member. The policy shall include in the conversion provisions the same conversion rights and conditions which are available to employees or members and their spouses and/or dependents who are terminated for reasons other than misconduct;
(b) A person who is eligible for federal medicare coverage; or
(c) A person who is covered under another group plan, policy, contract, or agreement providing benefits for hospital or medical care.
(3) To obtain the conversion agreement, a person must submit a written application and the first premium payment for the conversion agreement not later than thirty-one days after the date the person's eligibility for group coverage terminates or thirty-one days after the date the person received notice of termination of coverage, whichever is later. The conversion agreement shall become effective without lapse of coverage, immediately following termination of coverage under the group agreement.
(4) If a health maintenance organization or group agreement holder does not renew, cancels, or otherwise terminates the group agreement, the health maintenance organization must offer a conversion agreement to any person who was covered under the terminated agreement unless the person is eligible to obtain group benefits for hospital or medical care within thirty-one days after such nonrenewal, cancellation, or termination of the group agreement or thirty-one days after the date the person received notice of termination of coverage, whichever is later.
(5) The health maintenance organization shall determine the premium for the conversion agreement in accordance with the organization's table of premium rates applicable to the age and class of risk of each person to be covered under the agreement and the type and amount of benefits provided.
Application—2010 c 110:
See note following RCW 48.21.260
Legislative intent—Severability—1984 c 190:
See notes following RCW 48.21.250