National Medical Support Notice (NMSN) FAQs
If you do not see your question below, please contact us at 1-866-901-3212 Option: 1.
- Confirm that the employee is eligible for group health care benefits and, if so, provide him/her with a copy of the notice.
- Forward the instructions to enroll, to your designated plan administrator within 20 business days.
- After the plan administrator has completed enrollment, the Health Insurance Information form must be completed and returned to our office. In addition, ID cards, booklets and summary plan descriptions, should all be forwarded to our office within a reasonable time frame.
- Any interruption of health insurance benefits must be reported to our office as soon as possible, but no later 10 business days.
The employer completes Part A, indicating whether the employee is eligible for dependent health care coverage. If the employer determines that the employee is eligible, then the employer retains Part A and forwards Part B to the plan administrator.
The plan administrator completes Part B. Once the dependent(s) enrollment is complete, the plan administrator notifies the issuing local child support agency and the employer, so that health care coverage premium deductions, if required, can begin. The plan administrator is the person, or entity, responsible for enrolling participants in a health care coverage plan.
If health insurance is not available to the employee, complete and sign the NMSN Employer Response, on the reverse of the form, and mail the form to our office within 20 days.
We ask for a 10-business day response to the notice; however, you may take up to 20 business days to forward the notice to the plan administrator, and 40 business days to provide coverage information to our office.
The employee is under court order to supply medical coverage for the dependent(s) through employment. Enrolling the dependent(s) is only half the obligation. In order for the employer and employee to be in compliance, it is necessary for this information to be noted in the file and the information forwarded to the custodian of the child(ren).
Check box# 5 on Part A of the National Medical Support Notice (NMSN) and return it to the issuing agency, within 20 business days. Please specify the cost amounts for health insurance benefits.
Unless you are notified otherwise, cash support always has priority over healthcare coverage premiums; however, the custodial party has the option of choosing to receive health coverage over child support.
Noncustodial parents may decline health insurance for themselves, but they must still provide coverage for their children. The employee does not have to be involved in the enrollment process. On the signature line of the enrollment forms, simply write “Per Court Order – Copy Attached.”
The employee may need to enroll in health coverage, or change plans, in order to make the employee’s children eligible for health coverage.
If medical coverage is available and your organization fails to enroll and send in coverage and materials, the court may find the employer in contempt. The resulting penalties can include a fine. In addition, any employer who willfully fails to comply with the NMSN is liable for the amount incurred in health care services that would otherwise have been covered.
Contact our office and verify that the children live out-of-state. If so, check to see if your health insurance provider extends coverage to out-of-state residents. If so, the dependent children should be enrolled.
If health care coverage is not “accessible” to children living outside California, check item #2 of the NMSN Employer Response (Part A) and return it to our office.
The employer must comply with the NMSN until receipt of a notice from our office, indicating coverage may be terminated. It is the employee’s obligation to contact child support about any problems or questions regarding his/her case.
Continue health care coverage until you are notified by our office, indicating coverage may be terminated, or, upon receipt of a newly filed court order.
Medi-Cal is not considered a substitute for private health care coverage. The employer must comply with the NMSN or other court order.
When an employee with a child support or medical support obligation leaves your company or is terminated, notify our office within 10 business days of any lapse in health insurance coverage for the minor child(ren). Provide the termination date and employee’s last known address. If you know the name and/or address of the employee’s new employer, please provide this as well. This information should be submitted to our office, on the Termination of Benefits/Employment Notice (DCSS 0114), which will be included in the NMSN packet.
Child support/medical support income withholding orders remain in effect until further notice, so the employer should keep the income withholding order and the NMSN, in the event the employee returns to work. Also, if the employee returns to work, the employer must report the employee as a new hire, to the Employment Development Department.
Any interruption in the coverage must result in a notice to the LCSA within 10 business days. This includes reinstatement of benefits or any change in coverage.
If you don’t have the custodial party’s address, send correspondence to our office and we will forward it to the custodial party.
Our office and the California State Disbursement Unit (SDU) receive information on active child support cases from several databases. If you receive what appear to be duplicate documents, please contact our office to have the duplicate files deleted.
It is still the responsibility of the employers to secure health insurance benefits for the dependent(s), even if these benefits are paid through a union/trust. The law says that the employer is to forward (Part B) of the NMSN, to the Trust Administrator. The remaining paperwork (Part A), is to remain on file with the employer.
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