Session Results: Banking and Insurance

Kentuckians rely on the state’s banking and insurance industries to help preserve protect their assets, ensure access to medical care, and protect them from scams, which means state law has to address the challenges facing both types of services. This session, more than 20 bills that cleared the House Banking and Insurance Committee became law. Each measure can be found in the committee’s section of the Legislative Record online at legislature.ky.gov, and here are a few examples:

Protecting Kentucky Consumers – HB 88 outlaws unethical trade practices that target mortgage-holders and home owners. The bill prohibits an entity pretending to be a bank or falsely claiming to be affiliated with a bank from soliciting mortgage holders with unnecessary services. The measure also makes decades-long, exclusive contract agreements unenforceable and bans them from being entered into property records.

Providing Options for Employers to Offer Paid Family Medical Leave – HB 179 allows voluntary paid family medical leave policies to be offered as an insurance product as an optional offering for employers. These policies provide temporary wage replacement for workers who need to care for loved ones, including sick relatives, newborn children, or military-member or first responder injured in the line of duty.

Ensuring Access to Affordable Medicine – HB 220 updates step therapy protocols by permitting a patient to try similar biologic medicines before being prescribed a higher cost, name brand drug.

Preparing for Storms and Natural Disasters – HB 256 promotes construction practices that lead to stronger houses in order to resist losses due to catastrophic weather events. The Strengthen Kentucky Homes Act creates a grant fund available to incentivize property owners, contractors, and nonprofit organizations to build or retrofit using eligible roofing products.

Second Amendment Privacy Act – HB 357 prohibits merchant processors from using specific merchant category codes for transactions involving the sale of firearms and/or ammunition.

Protecting Consumers with Mine Subsidence Insurance – HB 371 updates guidelines for coverage limits for mine subsidence insurance policies required to address the potential movement of ground that can occur after underground coal mining.

Ensuring Transparency of Mortgage Documents – HB 488 clarifies what types of mortgage modifications can be filed and establishes a timeline for the filing of agreed upon mortgage amendments by county clerks.

Providing Flexibility to Ensure Coverage of Public University Property – HB 554 allows public postsecondary institutions to obtain coverage from authorized insurers or a self-insurance pool rather than require coverage through the state fire and tornado insurance fund.

Modernizing Banking Statutes – HB 726 provides a comprehensive update of the statutes, many of which date back to the 1960s, that address banks and financial institutions.

Granting Local School Districts More Financial Authority – HB 727 allows local school districts to directly issue approved general obligation bonds in an effort to address rising inflation and soaring business costs.

Protecting Financial Assets – HB 771 permits the establishment of spendthrift trusts. These trusts are managed by a third party and prevent a beneficiary from selling or giving away their equitable interest in a trust property, as well as keeping creditors from accessing funds placed in the trust.

Ensuring Treatment for Stuttering – SB 111 mandates health insurance coverage for speech therapy as a treatment for stuttering.

Protecting Patients and Pharmacies from Unfair Business Practices – SB 188 provides wide-ranging reforms to the pharmacy benefit manager (PBM) practice in order to improve patience choice and accessibility and ensure fair compensation for independent pharmacies. The measure establishes a minimum dispensing fee, and prohibits the practice of steering patients toward PBM-owned pharmacies.

As always, I can be reached anytime through the toll-free message line in Frankfort at 1-800-372-7181. You can also contact me via e-mail at Amy.Neighbors@lrc.ky.gov and keep track through the Kentucky legislature’s website at legislature.ky.gov.


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