New Laws in Georgia on Jan. 1, 2024

The new year historically brings in new state laws, and Georgia is no exception. However, reporting indicates that a cascade of new Georgia laws, described as “the majority of new laws,” that were signed by Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp after the last legislative session went into effect on July 1, 2023.

In the opinion of some reporting, the “most significant law to go into effect on Jan. 1 is related to healthcare.” Other laws taking effect in 2024 have been referred to as “tweaks” to various laws or regulations that were already on the books. Of prominent note, reporting alleges the Consumer Access to Contract Healthcare (CATCH) ACT “ensures consumer access to quality healthcare by setting adequacy standards for network plans offered by insurers.” Additionally and significantly, the Act is intended to “guarantee that everyone with insurance has access to primary and specialty care; mental healthcare; pharmacies and laboratories; and substance abuse treatment programs.”

Another significant piece of legislation that become effective on January 1, 2024 is Georgia’s Mental Health Parity Act (HB1013). This Act “requires that health care insurance plans that provide coverage for mental health treatment of substance use disorders do so in accordance with the federal Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act of 2008.” Health insurers are subject to the obligation to “provide an annual comparative analysis report to the insurance commissioner.”

Perhaps of significance to a majority of Georgia working people, “Georgia law will lower personal income tax rates starting in 2024.” The new law replaces the current graduated personal income tax with a flat rate of 5.49% effective Jan. 1, 2024. Thereafter, rate reductions will be implemented “until the flat rate reaches 4.99%.” A grace note on this legislation is that the “rate reductions can be delayed by year for each year if necessary.” Reporting did not define the phrase “if necessary.”

Another piece of legislation addresses representation of minority business enterprises in qualifying for state contracts. The reach of House Bill 128 will include “minority business enterprises, women and veteran-owned businesses.”

D & B Staff

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