Memorandum in Opposition
For Immediate Release: May 21, 2024

Re:      A.1682-B (Woerner)/– AN ACT to amend the insurance law, in relation to in relation to gender indication on claim forms

The New York Health Plan Association (HPA) opposes A.1682-B, which would prohibit health insurance claim denials based on the gender of an insured person. New York already protects all New Yorkers against discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity or expression and transgender status, which health plans support and adhere to. Given the existing protections, this proposal is unnecessary.

New York has a long history of ensuring health coverage is available and accessible to all New Yorkers regardless of their gender or gender identity. In 2017, the state announced new protections to ensure transgender or gender nonconforming individuals receive health care coverage “regardless of whether they present as the gender to whom the service is typically or exclusively provided.”[1] These protections were reaffirmed in 2019 when the federal government proposed rollback of health care protections for transgender and gender nonconforming individuals.[2] Insurance Law § 2607, as amended by Subpart D of Part J of Chapter 57 of the Laws of 2019, prohibits all issuers from refusing to issue an insurance policy or contract, or from canceling or declining to renew such policy or contract, because of the sex or marital status of the applicant or policyholder. Subpart D amended Insurance Law § 2607 to specifically define “sex” to include sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, and transgender status. These protections are clearly outlined in a Department of Financial Services (DFS) Circular Letter, issued in June of 2020.[3] Health plans have worked closely with DFS to guarantee these protections.

For the reasons outlined above, we believe this legislation unnecessary. Accordingly, we urge you reject A.1682-B/.

[1] August 16, 2017 press release;

[2]  August 5, 2019 press release;

[3] NYS Department of Financial Services Circular Letter No. 13 (2020; June 28, 2020