Maine insurance law could conflict with new federal rules

The state’s insurance office has drafted a bill to amend the law that LePage signed Tuesday and bring it into compliance with the federal rules, Treat said. She said the office wasn’t given an opportunity to weigh in as the law worked its way through the legislature.

The state’s insurance superintendent, Mila Kofman, resigned her post Monday because of the bill.

The Maine law includes one of Republicans’ biggest healthcare priorities — the sale of insurance across state lines. It lets out-of-state insurers sell policies in Maine without getting a license there. But beginning in 2014, the federal law will require insurers to be licensed in every state where they want to sell coverage through a newly created insurance exchange.

So a company could still take advantage of the Maine law without violating federal law, but only if it’s willing to opt out of a new marketplace for individuals and small businesses.

Supporters say the new law will help spur competition and lower prices, especially for young, healthy residents.