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Sunday, July 3, 2022

DOL takes on data-miner over novel health insurance plan - Reuters

The United States Department of Labor headquarters in Washington, D.C. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly

  • DOL said agreeing to be tracked online does not create any employment relationship
  • Lower court disagreed, said plan purchasers were "working owners"
  • DOL and amici say this opens floodgates to junk plans

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(Reuters) - A data-mining company and federal regulators will square off Wednesday before a U.S. appeals court over a 2020 ruling that critics say erases the need for employee-benefit health insurance to only be offered in a genuine employment context and encourages risky “junk” plans.

The U.S. Labor Department wants the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to overturn a Fort Worth, Texas federal judge’s ruling that health insurance policies offered by Data Marketing Partnership LP are employee-benefit plans, not state-regulated private health insurance.

According to DMP’s appellate briefs, the Texas-based company was created in 2018 to give internet users a financial stake in the booming data-aggregation market.

Users join DMP’s limited partnership by downloading tracking software, with the chance of sharing in the profits from the future sale of aggregated data. The only immediate benefit, however, is the...



Read Full Story: https://www.reuters.com/legal/transactional/dol-takes-data-miner-over-novel-health-insurance-plan-2022-01-04/