(1) Scope. This section shall apply to every group hospital, surgical or medical expense insurance policy or service plan purchased by or on behalf of an employer to provide coverage for employees and issued under s. 185.981 or by any insurer authorized under chs. 600 to 646 which has been delivered, renewed or is otherwise in force on or after June 12, 1976.
(2) Notice to policyholder or party responsible for payment of premiums.
(a) Prior to termination of any group policy, plan or coverage subject to this section due to a cessation of business or default in payment of premiums by the policyholder, trust, association or other party responsible for such payment, the insurer or organization issuing the policy, contract, booklet or other evidence of insurance shall notify in writing the policyholder, trust, association or other party responsible for payment of premiums of the date as of which the policy or plan will be terminated or discontinued. At such time, the insurer or organization shall additionally furnish to the policyholder, trust, association or other party a notice form in sufficient number to be distributed to covered employees or members indicating what rights, if any, are available to them upon termination.
(b) For purpose of notice and distribution to covered employees and members under par. (a), the administrator responsible for determining the persons covered and the premiums payable to the insurer or organization under any group policy or plan of disability insurance is responsible for providing such notices.
(3) Liability of insurer or service organization for payment of claims. Under any group policy or plan subject to this section, the insurer or organization shall be liable for all valid claims for covered losses prior to the expiration of any grace period specified in the group policy or plan.
(5) Notice exception. The notice requirements of this section shall not apply if a group policy or plan providing coverage to employees or members is terminated and immediately replaced by another policy or plan providing similar coverage to such employees or members.