Receipt Date - Medicare definition

The receipt date of a claim is the date the contractor receives the claim (provided the filing is in a format and contains data sufficiently complete so that the filing qualifies as a claim). The receipt date is used to: determine if the claim was timely filed , determine the “payment floor” for the claim , determine the “payment ceiling” on the claim  and, when applicable, to calculate interest payment due for a clean claim that is not timely processed, and to report to CMS statistical data on claims, such as in workload reports.

A paper claim that is received by 5:00 p.m. on a business day, or by closing time if the contractor routinely ends its public business day between 4:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m., must be considered as received on that date, even if the contractor does not open the envelope which contains the claim or does not enter the claims data into the claims processing system until a later date. A paper claim that is received after 5:00 p.m., or after the contractor’s routine close of business between 4:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m., is considered as received on the next business day.

A paper claim is considered as received if it is delivered to the contractor’s place of business by the U.S. Postal Service, picked up from a P.O. box, or is otherwise delivered to the contractor’s place of business by its routine close of business time. If the contractor uses a P.O. box for receipt of mailed claims, it must have its mail picked up from its box at least once per business day unless precluded on a particular day by the emergency closing of its place of business or that of its postal box site.


As electronic claim tapes and diskettes that may be submitted by providers or their agents to an FI are also subject to manual delivery, rather than direct electronic transmission, the paper claim receipt rule also applies to establish the date of receipt of claims submitted on such manually delivered tapes and diskettes.

Electronic claims transmitted directly to a contractor, or to a clearinghouse with which the contractor contracts as its representative for the receipt of its claims, by 5:00 p.m. in the contractor’s time zone, or by its closing time if it routinely closes between 4:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m., must likewise be considered as received on that day even if the contractor does not upload or process the data until a later date. NOTE: The differentiation between HIPAA-compliant and HIPAA-non-compliant in §80.2.1.2 with respect to applying the payment floor, does not apply to establishing date of receipt. Use the methodology described above to establish the date of receipt for all electronic claims.

Paper and electronic claims that do not meet the basic legibility, format, or completion requirements are not considered as received for claims processing and may be rejected from the claims processing system. Rejected claims are not considered as received until resubmitted as corrected, complete claims. The contractor may not use the data entry date, the date of passage of front-end edits, the date the document control number is assigned, or any date other than the actual calendar date of receipt as described above to establish the official receipt date of a claim.

The following permissive exception applies to establishment of receipt date: Where its system or hours of operation permit, a contractor may, at its option, classify a paper or electronic claim received between its closing time and midnight, or on a Saturday, Sunday, holiday, or during an emergency closing period as received on the actual calendar date of delivery or receipt. Unless a contractor closes its place of business early in an isolated situation due to an emergency, the contractor’s cutoff time for establishing the receipt date may never be earlier than 4:00.



A contractor may not make system changes, extend its hours of operation, or incur significant additional costs solely to begin to accommodate late receipt of claims if not already equipped to do so.

The cutoff time for paper claims may not exceed the cutoff time for electronic claims. However, the cutoff time for electronic claims may exceed the cutoff time for paper claims and, indeed, carriers and FIs are encouraged to use this tool where their system and overnight batch run schedules permit. Likewise, at a carrier or FI’s option, it may consider electronic claims received on a weekend or holiday as received on the actual calendar date of receipt, even though paper claims received in a P.O. box on a weekend or holiday would not be considered received until the next business day.

Where a carrier or FI prepares bills for payment for purchased DME because the $50 tolerance is exceeded (see §40.4.1) it establishes any date consistent with its system processing requirements as the receipt date for the second and succeeding bills. It uses the date as close to its payment as possible

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