End of National Emergency Resolution

Compliance, COVID-19, Employee Benefits

Please note there is some debate whether the date of the resolution, April 10, 2023, is the actual end of the National Emergency or if it remains May 11, 2023. At this time, there is no clear guidance on which date should be used to determine the end of the outbreak period for purposes of the deadline extensions. If you have a deadline extension situation for events that occurred post June 10, 2022, please contact your M3 Account Team or your benefits counsel.

On April 10, 2023, President Biden signed a resolution ending the COVID-19 National Emergency (NE). Previously, the President issued a declaration to end the NE and Public Health Emergency (PHE) on May 11, 2023. The resolution did not end the PHE, which is still scheduled to end May 11, 2023.

As a result, the group health plan deadline extensions will end at the conclusion of the “outbreak period”, which will now be June 9, 2023.

As a reminder, deadline relief was extended for the following regulations and requirements for group health plans:

  • COBRA: 60 day election period, premium due dates and notification of qualifying event or determination of disability
  • HIPAA Special Enrollment: 30 day enrollment period (or 60 day period under CHIPRA)
  • Benefit Claims procedure
  • Appeal for an adverse benefit determination
  • Request for external review or final internal adverse benefit determination

The original guidance extended these time periods until the end of the National Emergency plus 60 days, which was deemed the end of the “outbreak period”.

Additional guidance issued in 2021 applied an extension of 1 year from the date of the event OR until the end of the “outbreak period”, whichever was first. With the end of the NE on April 10, 2023, these deadline extensions will no longer be available after June 9, 2023.

The COVID Testing and Vaccine requirements will end at the conclusion of the PHE, which is still scheduled for May 11, 2023.

Key Takeaway

Employers should take note of the June 9, 2023 official end date of the National Emergency “outbreak period” and make any required adjustments to their internal practices regarding the deadline extensions. In addition, employers should plan for changes to group health plan provisions related to COVID-19 as called for by the PHE.

The information provided is a summary of laws and regulations relating to employee benefit plan compliance. This information should not be construed as legal advice. In all cases, employers should consult with their own legal counsel.

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