Horizon’s request to reorganize takes important step

DOBI considers application complete, schedules 3 public hearings to discuss insurer’s desire to become nonprofit mutual holding company

Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey’s desire to reorganize its corporate structure as a nonprofit mutual holding company is one step closer to being complete.

On Thursday, the New Jersey Department of Banking & Insurance announced that it has determined that Horizon’s application is complete — and that the department will now hold three public hearings on the request, as required by statute.

DOBI Commissioner Marlene Caride said one of the meetings will be in person and two will be held virtually.

“As part of the public hearing process, Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey will present an overview of their plan to reorganize as a mutual holding company,” she said. “The public will have multiple opportunities to share comments on the application and plan through one in-person hearing, two virtual sessions as well as the submission of written comments.”

Here is information on the dates of the public hearings:

  • Hearing 1: Oct. 6 (11 a.m.) at Department of Banking & Insurance (20 W. State St., Trenton);
  • Hearing 2: Oct. 11 (6 p.m.) virtual;
  • Hearing 3: Oct. 17 (1 p.m.) virtual.

Click here to review the application or to register for a public meeting.

Thirty days following the last hearing, the commissioner is required to either approve or disapprove the plan of mutualization and reorganization.

Specifically, the law states that the commissioner shall approve a plan of mutualization and reorganization unless the commissioner finds the plan:

  • Is contrary to law;
  • Would be detrimental to the safety or soundness of the proposed reorganized insurer and insurance company subsidiaries of the proposed mutual holding company;
  • Does not benefit the interests of the policyholders of the health service corporation or treats them inequitably.

Horizon officials, in a release, said they are grateful that the process has taken another step.

“For almost 90 years, Horizon’s members have relied on us to help them achieve their best health, to work with their doctors to improve quality and to make care more affordable and convenient. What our members need and demand from health care today is rapidly changing, and becoming a not-for-profit mutual will better position Horizon to continue meeting their needs.

“We appreciate the very thorough and complete effort that the department has invested in evaluating the application. We remain committed to continue working with the department to achieve a successful completion of this process and to providing the benefits that the reorganization will deliver to our members.”