Insurance

M&S partner Jay Angoff, on behalf of the Consumers Council of Missouri, sent a strong message to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS): disclose health insurance rates and rate justifications when they’re filed, so that consumers can comment on proposed increases and can seek to have unjustified increases reduced. Mr. Angoff is the former Director of HHS’s Office of Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight.

The lawsuit seeks to have HHS comply with its own transparency regulations, which would allow consumers to comment on proposed rates before they take effect. As Mr. Angoff, also the former Insurance Commissioner of Missouri, told the Washington Post, “The only way those rates are likely to come down is if the rate filing justifications are made public.” HHS has now disclosed some of the data the suit seeks, but it disclosed it after 2015 rates became effective—thus defeating the purpose of its own regulations. The lawsuit was also covered by the St. Louis Post-DispatchCNBC, Associated Press, and Politico, and Mr. Angoff discussed the filing on Fox and Friends.