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New Hampshire to allow insurance companies to sell 2013 policies in 2014

Insurance Commissioner Roger Sevigny yesterday announced his department will allow New Hampshire insurers to renew existing individual health plans for one more year, delaying the full impact of many Affordable Care Act provisions.

Whether Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Hampshire, the largest seller of individual plans in the state, will continue to offer the policies is not yet known. Anthem’s representatives couldn’t be reached for comment yesterday.

The federal health care reform law requires that insurance plans meet certain standards of coverage and cost. However, the rollout of the health insurance marketplace websites has been plagued by technical malfunctions and delays.

President Obama announced Nov. 14 that the federal Department of Health and Human Services will not enforce the standards next year, but that individual states still could.

So far, 12 states in addition to New Hampshire have said they will allow the old plans to be sold. Ten states have said they will not allow the old plans to be sold.

Anthem had previously agreed to honor 2013 policies for New Hampshire customers who renewed before Nov. 30.

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