Oregon Department of Consumer and Business Services, Workers' Compensation Division

Rule Rule 436-009-0030
Insurer’s Duties and Responsibilities

(1) General.
(a) The insurer must pay for medical services related to a compensable injury claim, except as provided by OAR 436-060-0055 (Payment of Medical Services on Nondisabling Claims; Employer/Insurer Responsibility).
(b) The insurer, or its designated agent, may request from the medical provider any and all necessary records needed to review accuracy of billings. The medical provider may charge an appropriate fee for copying documents under OAR 436-009-0060 (Oregon Specific Codes). If the evaluation of the records must be conducted on-site, the provider must furnish a reasonable work-site for the records to be reviewed at no cost. These records must be provided or made available for review within 14 days of a request.
(c) The insurer must establish an audit program for bills for all medical services to determine that the bill reflects the services provided, that appropriate prescriptions and treatment plans are completed in a timely manner, that payments do not exceed the maximum fees adopted by the director, and that bills are submitted in a timely manner. The audit must be continuous and must include no fewer than 10 percent of medical bills. The insurer must provide upon the director’s request documentation establishing that the insurer is conducting a continuous audit of medical bills. This documentation must include, but not be limited to, medical bills, internal audit forms, and any medical charge summaries prepared by private medical audit companies.
(2) Bill Processing.
(a) Insurers must date stamp medical bills, chart notes, and other documentation upon receipt. Bills not submitted according to OAR 436-009-0010 (Medical Billing and Payment)(1)(b), (3), and (7) must be returned to the medical provider within 20 days of receipt of the bill with a written explanation describing why the bill was returned and what needs to be corrected. A request for chart notes on EDI billings must be made to the medical provider within 20 days of the receipt of the bill. The number of days between the date the insurer returns the bill or requests chart notes and the date the insurer receives the corrected bill or chart notes, does not count toward the 45 days within which the insurer is required to make payment.
(b) The insurer must retain a copy of each medical provider’s bill received by the insurer or must be able to reproduce upon request data relevant to the bill, including but not limited to, provider name, date of service, date the insurer received the bill, type of service, billed amount, coding submitted by the medical provider as described in OAR 436-009-0010 (Medical Billing and Payment)(1)(b) and (3)(b), and insurer action, for any nonpayment or fee reduction. This includes all bills submitted to the insurer even when the insurer determines no payment is due.
(c) Any service billed with a code number commanding a higher fee than the services provided must be returned to the medical provider for correction or paid at the value of the service provided.
(3) Payment Requirements.
(a) Insurers must pay bills for medical services on accepted claims within 45 days of receipt of the bill, if the bill is submitted in proper form according to OAR 436-009-0010 (Medical Billing and Payment)(1)(b), (3)(a) through (7)(c), and clearly shows that the treatment is related to the accepted compensable injury or disease.
(b) The insurer or its representative must provide a written explanation of benefits (EOB) of the services being paid or denied within 45 days of receipt of the bill. If the billing is done electronically, the insurer or its representative may provide this explanation electronically. The insurer or its representative must send the explanation to the medical provider that billed for the services. For the purpose of this rule an EOB has the same meaning as an explanation of review (EOR).
(c) The written EOB must be in 10 point size font or larger. Electronic and written explanations must include:
(A) The amount of payment for each service billed. When the payment covers multiple patients, the explanation must clearly separate and identify payments for each patient;
(B) The specific reason for nonpayment, reduced payment, or discounted payment for each service billed;
(C) An Oregon or toll-free phone number for the insurer or its representative, and a statement that the insurer or its representative must respond to a medical provider’s payment question within two days, excluding weekends and legal holidays;
(D) The following notice, Web link, and phone number:
(E) Space for the provider’s signature and date; and
(F) A notice of right to administrative review as follows:
(d) Payment of medical bills is required within 14 days of any action causing the service to be payable, or within 45 days of the insurer’s receipt of the bill, whichever is later.
(e) Failure to pay for medical services timely may render the insurer liable to pay a reasonable monthly service charge for the period payment was delayed, if the provider customarily applies such a service charge to the general public.
(f) When there is a dispute over the amount of a bill or the appropriateness of services rendered, the insurer must, within 45 days, pay the undisputed portion of the bill and at the same time provide specific reasons for nonpayment or reduction of each medical service code.
(g) Bills for medical services rendered at the request of the insurer and bills for information submitted at the request of the insurer, which are in addition to those required in OAR 436-010-0240 (Medical Records and Reporting Requirements for Medical Providers) must be paid within 45 days of receipt by the insurer even if the claim is denied.
(h) If an insurer determines that it has made an overpayment to a provider for medical services, the insurer may request a refund from the provider. The insurer must make the request within 180 days of the payment date. Resolution of overpayment disputes must be made under OAR 436-009-0008 (Request for Review before the Director).
(4) Electronic Payment.
(a) An insurer may pay a provider through a direct deposit system, automated teller machine card or debit card, or other means of electronic transfer if the provider voluntarily consents.
(A) The provider’s consent must be obtained before initiating electronic payments.
(B) The consent may be written or verbal. The insurer must send the provider a written confirmation when consent is obtained verbally.
(C) The provider may discontinue receiving electronic payments by notifying the insurer in writing.
(b) Cardholder agreement for ATM or debit cards. The provider must receive a copy of the cardholder agreement outlining the terms and conditions under which an automated teller machine card or debit card has been issued before or at the time the initial electronic payment is made.
(c) Instrument of payment. The instrument of payment must be negotiable and payable to the provider for the full amount of the benefit paid, without cost to the provider.
(5) Communication with Providers.
(a) The insurer or its representative must respond to a medical provider’s inquiry about a medical payment within two days, not including weekends or legal holidays. The insurer or its representative may not refer the medical provider to another entity to obtain an answer.
(b) An insurer or its representative and a medical provider may agree to send and receive payment information by email or other electronic means. Electronic records sent are subject to the Oregon Consumer Identity Theft Protection Act under ORS 646A.600 (Short title) to 646A.628 (Allocation of moneys) and federal law.
(6) EDI Reporting. For medical bill reporting requirements, see OAR 436-160 Electronic Data Interchange Medical Bill Data rules.

Last accessed
Jun. 8, 2021