(a) General rules.
(1) If an entity requests a health plan to conduct a transaction as a standard transaction, the health plan must do so.
(2) A health plan may not delay or reject a transaction, or attempt to adversely affect the other entity or the transaction, because the transaction is a standard transaction.
(3) A health plan may not reject a standard transaction on the basis that it contains data elements not needed or used by the health plan (for example, coordination of benefits information).
(4) A health plan may not offer an incentive for a health care provider to conduct a transaction covered by this part as a transaction described under the exception provided for in §162.923(b).
(5) A health plan that operates as a health care clearinghouse, or requires an entity to use a health care clearinghouse to receive, process, or transmit a standard transaction may not charge fees or costs in excess of the fees or costs for normal telecommunications that the entity incurs when it directly transmits, or receives, a standard transaction to, or from, a health plan.
(b) Coordination of benefits. If a health plan receives a standard transaction and coordinates benefits with another health plan (or another payer), it must store the coordination of benefits data it needs to forward the standard transaction to the other health plan (or other payer).
(c) Code sets. A health plan must meet each of the following requirements:
(1) Accept and promptly process any standard transaction that contains codes that are valid, as provided in subpart J of this part.
(2) Keep code sets for the current billing period and appeals periods still open to processing under the terms of the health plan’s coverage.