A. General

Section 1848(g)(4) of the Social Security Act requires physicians and suppliers to submit claims to Medicare carriers for services furnished on or after September 1, 1990. It also prohibits physicians and suppliers from imposing a charge for completing and submitting a claim. Payment for assigned services not filed within 1 year (for services on or after 9/1/90) are reduced 10 percent. Physicians and suppliers who fail to submit a claim or who impose a charge for completing the claim are subject to sanctions. CMS is responsible for assessing sanctions and monetary penalties for noncompliance.

Physicians and suppliers are not required to take assignment of Medicare benefits unless they are enrolled in the Medicare Participating Physician and Supplier Program or, in the case of physician services, the Medicare beneficiary is also a recipient of State medical assistance (Medicaid) or the service is otherwise subject to mandatory assignment.

B. Compliance Monitoring

To ensure that providers and suppliers are enrolled in the Medicare program and submit claims in compliance with the mandatory claims submission requirements found in §1848(g)(4) of the Social Security Act, contractors shall:

1) Process beneficiary claims submitted to A/B MACs or carriers for services that are not covered by Medicare (e.g., for hearing aids, cosmetic surgery, personal comfort services, etc.; see 42 CFR 411.15 for details), in accordance with its normal processing procedures;

2) Process beneficiary claims submitted to A/B MACs or carriers for services that are covered by Medicare and the beneficiary has submitted a complete and valid claim (Form CMS-1490S) and all supporting documentation associated with the claim, including an itemized bill with the following information:

• Date of service,

• Place of service,

• Description of illness or injury,

• Description of each surgical or medical service or supply furnished,

• Charge for each service,

• The doctor’s or supplier’s name and address,

• The provider or supplier’s National Provider Identifier (NPI)

If the beneficiary furnishes all other information but fails to supply the provider or supplier’s NPI the contractor shall not return the claim but rather look up the provider or supplier’s NPI using the NPI registry. If the contractor determines that the provider or supplier was not a Medicare enrolled provider with a valid NPI, the contractor shall follow previously established procedures in order to process and adjudicate the claim.

3) Retain the Form-1490S and supporting documentation and manually return a copy to the beneficiary if it is for a Medicare-covered service and the claim is incomplete, does not include all required supporting documentation and/or contains invalid information. Contractors shall also include an appropriate letter that specifically communicates all the items listed above which were missing or
invalid. In addition, the CMS-1490S and supporting documentation shall be maintained for purposes of the timely filing rules in the event that the beneficiary re-submits the claim.

If a beneficiary submits a claim on the Form CMS-1500, manually return the Form CMS-1500 claim to the beneficiary, and include a copy of the Form CMS-1490S, along with a letter instructing the beneficiary to complete and return the Form CMS-1490S for processing within the time period prescribed in §70.5, above. Include in the letter a description of missing, invalid or incomplete items required for the Form CMS-1490S that were not included with the submitted Form CMS-1500 or were invalid.

4) Retain Medicare claims records using the following disposition rules.