November 30, 2012 |
In a bid to expedite money to Superstorm Sandy victims, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo issued an executive order tightening rules on insurance companies and relaxing rules for homeowner advocates. According to the executive order, 24 insurance companies in the state must start investigating claims filed by families affected by Sandy within six days instead of the standard 15. Companies are also prohibited from canceling policies of homeowners and small businesses in stricken areas through Dec. 15, according to the Department of Financial Services.
June 5, 1985 |
Unocal, fresh from its battle with Texas oilman T. Boone Pickens Jr., on Tuesday sued four insurance companies for allegedly canceling liability insurance policies on Unocal's directors the day after Pickens disclosed his 7.9% interest in the Los Angeles-based oil company. In a lawsuit filed in Los Angeles Superior Court, Unocal claims that the insurance companies' actions were illegal and fraudulent.
February 9, 2014 |
The recent Congressional Budget Office report on healthcare reform has lots of good news. Insurance premiums are lower than anticipated, the Affordable Care Act will cost $9 billion less than previously estimated and the provision designed to buffer insurance companies from risk will actually raise revenue, not function as any sort of federal government bailout. But the good news has not gotten much attention because the CBO also projected that, within the next several years, healthcare reform may reduce employment and worker hours by the equivalent of about 2 million full-time positions.
December 17, 2013 |
When will the insurers revolt? It's a question that's popping up more and more. On the surface, the question answers itself. We're talking about pinstriped insurance company executives, not Hell's Angels. One doesn't want to paint with too broad a brush, but if you were going to guess which vocations lend themselves least to revolutionary zeal, the actuary sciences rank slightly behind embalmers. Still, it's hard not to wonder how much more these people are willing to take. Even an obedient dog will bite if you kick it enough.
June 28, 2012 |
The Supreme Court is shaking up the political chessboard today by ruling on the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act - a.k.a. "Obamacare" - and there is one player who will win no matter what the decision may be: the insurance industry. When Congress was debating healthcare three years ago, health insurers were no fans of reform. They were making gobs of money with the system just as it was. For years, their lobbyists managed to kill any attempt to tinker with the status quo, and major tinkering, like instituting a Canadian-style single-payer scheme, was out of the question because it would cut them out of the healthcare equation. Also, for sensible business reasons, insurers had never been especially keen on being forced to offer coverage to people with preexisting medical conditions or to pay for preventative care or various other benefits the Democrats and President Obama wanted as part of a healthcare reform package.
December 19, 2011 |
I just received a letter from my cardiologist's medical group saying they will be charging a $350 annual fee for administrative costs. This is the first time I've seen a medical group charging an annual fee to its patients. Is this what the bad economy has come to? The fee appears exorbitant and discriminatory against less wealthy individuals. Though charging for administrative services isn't yet widely common, the practice is growing, says James Doherty, an attorney who works with physician practices in Columbia, Md. There are a variety of reasons why, adds Dr. Glen Stream, president of the American Academy of Family Physicians: the bad economy, a downward trend in physician reimbursement and a growing list of administrative tasks heaped onto physician practices by insurance companies.