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You are here: Home . bulletins . 2005 . b-0070-05
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COMMISSIONER'S BULLETIN # B-0070-05

December 06, 2005


To: ALL PERSONS MARKETING MEDICARE PART D PRESCRIPTION DRUG COVERAGE AND INSURANCE COMPANIES, CORPORATIONS, HEALTH MAINTENANCE ORGANIZATIONS, EXCHANGES, MUTUALS, RECIPROCALS, ASSOCIATIONS, LLOYDS, OR OTHER INSURERS WRITING LIFE, ACCIDENT, AND HEALTH INSURANCE AND IN THE STATE OF TEXAS AND THEIR AGENTS AND REPRESENTATIVES, AND THE PUBLIC GENERALLY


Re: Medicare Part D, including: Medicare Advantage Plans, Medicare Advantage Prescription Drug Plans, Prescription Drug Plans, or 1876 Cost Plans

Pursuant to the Medicare Prescription Drug Improvement and Modernization Act of 2003, ( MMA ) the Prescription Drug Benefit will become available January 1, 2006 , with enrollment beginning on November 15, 2005 . On August 15, 2005 , The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services ( CMS ) issued marketing guidelines for offering the prescription drug benefit to Medicare beneficiaries through Medicare Advantage Plans, Medicare Advantage Prescription Drug Plans, Private Prescription Drug Plans, and 1876 Cost Plans. Agents and plan sponsors offering these benefits should review and comply with the guides issued by CMS . The August 15, 2005 , CMS guidelines are available online at: http://www.cms.hhs.gov/healthplans/marketing/FINALMergedGuidelinesCMS8-151200pm.pdf

The Texas Department of Insurance (Department) has received information that complaints have been made to CMS asserting misconduct on the part of licensed agents marketing Medicare Part D plans. CMS has notified the Department that CMS will refer complaints it receives about agents licensed in this state to the Department.

This bulletin is to remind all persons that licensed Texas insurance agents marketing these plans remain subject to Texas insurance statutes prohibiting misrepresentations and activities commonly known as ?churning? and ?twisting? with regard to insurance products, including Texas Insurance Code §§541.051 and 4005.101. In addition to possible license revocation or suspension, violation of these provisions may subject the agent to civil and criminal penalties. If you should have any questions regarding this bulletin, please contact Ana Smith-Daley at (512) 322-3401 or at LifeHealth@tdi.state.tx.us.

Mike Geeslin

Commissioner of Insurance



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Last updated: 09/07/2014

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