The US Department of Labor’s Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) said that MEWA Form M-1 annual report filings are now available electronically through the agency’s Web site . Previously, the filings were available to the public only in paper form. Users will be able to search the database a number of ways, including by name of the MEWA, location of the MEWA’s headquarters, and geographical area where coverage is offered.
MEWAs provide health and welfare benefits to employees of two or more employers.
“Electronic access to these filings will provide a useful tool to employers as they make decisions to select legitimate health care arrangements and avoid fraudulent operators, ” Assistant Secretary of Labor Ann Combs said in a statement.
EBSA officials said in an announcement that the new Web site should also give state insurance departments who share jurisdiction over MEWAs with the Department of Labor timely access to important information for identifying fraudulent health plans.
The Labor Department has authority under HIPAA to require MEWAs to submit Form M-1 reports annually.Since the department began requiring MEWAs to file annual reports, approximately 2,700 M-1 reports have been sent in.