Montana Code Annotated 2023



Part 8. Medical Support Order Enforcement

Effect Of Order On Health Benefit Plans

40-5-809. Effect of order on health benefit plans. (1) The duties and responsibilities under a plan pursuant to this part apply equally to a union or employer that serves as the administrator of a plan for a parent who is a member or employee.

(2) A copy of a medical support order requiring enrollment of a child in a health benefit plan may be submitted to the plan administrator by either parent, by the department, by a third-party custodian, or by an employer-payor of either parent. The party submitting the order shall submit the child's name and birth date and the names and mailing addresses of the parents. If the child is a recipient of public assistance, the party submitting the order shall also submit the address of the department. If there is a third-party custodian of the child, the address of the third-party custodian must also be submitted. A copy of a medical support order may be served on the plan administrator by certified mail.

(3) Presentation of the medical support order to the plan administrator authorizes each parent, the department, if the department has interest, or the third-party custodian to receive pertinent notices from the plan administrator and to freely communicate and generally interact with the plan administrator in all respects regarding the child's benefits as fully and effectively as if the obligated parent were to do so personally.

(4) If a medical support order requires the child to be enrolled in a health benefit plan, presentation of the order to the plan administrator binds the plan to enroll the child in the plan as provided by this part.

(5) If a health benefit plan is available through the obligated parent's employer or other payor of income, presentation of the medical support order to the payor binds the payor to enrollment of the child in the plan and to automatically deduct premium payments required by the plan from the obligated parent's income and remit them to the plan provider for as long as the obligated parent is eligible for coverage.

(6) (a) Ambiguities and discrepancies in an order may not be used to unreasonably or unnecessarily delay health benefit plan coverage for a child.

(b) If more than one plan is available to an obligated parent and the medical support order fails to specify a plan or combination of benefits to be provided for a child or if there has been a change in plans due to a change in employment of the obligated parent or for some other reason, the parties and the department shall apply the medical support order so as to provide the child with coverage under a plan that has a reasonable cost and that provides the child with benefits closest to those described in the order.

History: En. Sec. 9, Ch. 504, L. 1995; amd. Sec. 15, Ch. 482, L. 1997.