Review our Government Relations Update - Caucus Call: Lansing

Peter J. Langley

Caucus Call Lansing

This Week's Updates

The Michigan Senate will be in session Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday this week. The Michigan House will be in session on Wednesday and Thursday.

Personal Identifying Information Legislation This week

  • Who needs to know: Businesses that rely on accurate background checks as part of their operations.
  • Potential impact: Companies that perform background checks will no longer have access to certain basic information like birthdates from courts to verify a person’s identity through the process.

The Michigan Supreme Court issued an order that prohibits the release of Personal Identifying Information (PII) starting Jan. 1, 2022. The order defines PII as birth date, social security number, driver’s license number, passport number, or financial account information. This information is used by companies that perform background checks for employers and rental applications. Without verifying information, it will make the process much more difficult to determine any outstanding criminal or civil case history.

In response, House Bill 5368 was introduced by Representative Graham Filler. The bill would allow the release of an individual’s name and date of birth. The bill is going to be discussed in the House Judiciary Committee this week on Wednesday morning.

No-Fault Medical Fee Schedule and DIFS Warning

  • Who needs to know: Auto insurers that operate in Michigan.
  • Potential impact: Changes to the No-Fault medical fee schedule will change reimbursement rate, while the state is warning providers to pay promptly.

The Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services (DIFS) filed the updated rule, MOAHR 2020-114, that outlines the applicable Medicare fee schedule for auto-related reimbursements. The rule is the product of legislation that was enacted last year. The rule takes effect immediately and applies to:

    • Applicable Medicare fee schedules
    • Procedures for determining which providers are eligible for enhanced reimbursement
    • Procedures for DIFS to collect charge information by providers as of Jan. 1, 2021 to resolve provider appeals
    • Dates and methodology for determining payment for reimbursement
    • Procedures for DIFS to administer accreditation requirements

In a separate action, DIFS warned insurance companies to provide prompt payment to car accident victims or face administrative action. A recent notice from DIFS indicates that delayed reimbursement payments may be preventing injury care providers from accessing a $25 million fund designed to address financial shortfalls triggered by auto no-fault reform. The bulletin also noted that PIP benefits are overdue if not paid within 30 days after the insurer receives reasonable proof of the fact and of the amount of the loss.

Week Ahead:

  • The House Energy Committee will hold an oversight hearing on Wednesday morning about the issue of power outages in Michigan.
  • The House Regulatory Reform Committee will take testimony on multiple bills making changes to liquor licenses in Michigan.
  • The Senate Economic and Small Business Development Committee will take up legislation that makes changes to the brownfield development authority.
  • The Michigan Tax Commission will meet Tuesday morning.
  • There will be administrative rules hearings on Tuesday for two proposed rules dealing with child placing agencies and licensing for foster family homes and foster family group homes.
  • The Mackinac Straits Corridor Authority will meet on Wednesday to consider multiple items, including the RFP for tunnel construction.
  • The Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission will meet multiple times this week. The are expected to vote on draft versions of reapportionment plans for the congressional seats, as well as the House of Representatives.

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