Legal Update: Blue Cross Blue Shield Antitrust Settlement

On February 11, we shared details about a tentative settlement by the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association in a pending class action antitrust lawsuit. The lawsuit alleged that insurance companies in the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association (“BCBSA”) entered into agreements not to compete with each other for business, in violation of federal antitrust laws.

As anticipated, the federal district court approved the settlement in March and the timeframe has opened for accepting claims from both individuals and employers. As a refresher, there are two groups who are eligible to participate in the $2.67 billion settlement:

  1. Fully insured group policyholders and individual participants who had coverage with a BCBSA insurer between February 7, 2008 and October 16, 2020.
  2. Self-funded groups that were administered by a BCBSA insurer between September 1, 2015 and October 16, 2020.

Anthem, Inc. is a BCBSA member and is the largest insurer in the Indiana market. If your company has offered an Anthem fully insured or self-funded plan during these timeframes, you are likely eligible to participate in the settlement. Your employees and their family members who were enrolled during this time are also eligible to participate.

To learn more and to file an online claim, visit bcbssettlement.com. Although we anticipate that policyholders will receive a notice regarding the opportunity to participate, you don’t need to wait to receive that notice before submitting your claim.

Here’s what you’ll need to file:

  • Company information:
    • Company name
    • Primary address
    • Name and title of company contact
    • Phone number and email address
  • Plan information:
    • Plan name (Anthem Indiana you will choose Anthem Insurance Companies, Inc. d/b/a Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield)
    • BCBS group number
    • Coverage start date
    • Coverage end date

Please note that you can enter information for multiple health plans. If your company sponsored a group health insurance policy and/or a self-funded plan through Anthem for two different time periods during the eligibility timeframe, enter two different plans and date ranges for coverage.

Once plan information is entered, you will be asked to select a method for allocation of premiums. This is because employers and employees can participate, and settlement funds will be allocated based on the percent of contributions paid by each group. There are two options available.

Default Option

For group plan participants who do not submit claims, 100% of the premium on which the settlement award will be based is attributed to the employer.

When plan participants submit individual claims, total premium is allocated as follows under the default method:

Fully insured plans:

  • Single coverage 85% employer/15% employee
  • Family coverage 66% employer/34% employee

Self-funded plans:

  • Single coverage 82% employer/18% employee
  • Family coverage 75% employer/25% employee

Alternative Contribution Percentage Option

The alternative option requires that you provide the percentage contribution you believe you contributed for each year that your company sponsored a group health plan through a BCBS Association plan.

Employers who choose to apply for an alternative contribution percentage must supply documentation with the claim form supporting the percentage the employer claims to have contributed for each year.

The settlement is open for claims submissions until November 5, 2021. Although class action settlements often result in only a small recovery, we recommend participating. The claim submission process is simple and straightforward, and there is little downside outside the time it takes to file your claim.

First Person clients can reach out to their account manager for assistance in obtaining your Anthem group number and any other information needed to participate. If you’re an employer with questions, please contact Katy Stowers. Individuals with questions about applying should contact their employer or HR department.

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