Group Health Plans For Small Businesses

Group Health Plans For Small Businesses-20
And health insurance for small businesses can boost the overall health of your organization by increasing employee satisfaction and productivity.Health benefits cost money, of course, but your small business will likely save on hiring and training costs because of lower turnover.That’s because the price will be based on how an employee’s age, location, and tobacco use.

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Your business has several choices when it come to buying a group health plan for your team.

Insurers have to offer plans that cover at least the “10 essential health benefits and services” legally required under affordable care rules, which include maternity and mental health care.

Under the Affordable Care Act, health plans offered by a trade association have to meet the same requirements as those offered through one of the insurance marketplaces. Third-party benefits administrator: Newer online players like Gusto and Zenefits offer a health plan or plans they choose from an insurance company and then they handle the enrollment and administration online to keep costs down.

Examples of trade groups that offer health plans to member companies include the Western Growers Assn. Traditional full-service agent or broker: You can still contact an insurance broker but the high cost and lack of variety available to small companies via this route in the past is part of why small businesses haven’t routinely offered healthcare.

And in some cases you can earn a tax credit or use a tax deduction to cover part of the cost.

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If you are a small business with 50 or more full-time employees or, counting part-timers, you have the equivalent of 50 full-time employees, you already have had to offer health insurance as of this year or face penalties under the Affordable Care Act.Many brokers now work with the federal and state marketplaces and can help walk you through the process.Under the affordable care act, all small-group health insurance plans whether sold through a marketplace or not have to offer the four levels of coverage, from bronze to platinum.On average, silver plans are often the most popular because they strike a balance between cost and benefits.As a small business, you can decide which plan, or combination of plans to offer your team.The online marketplaces offer a set number of plans from private insurance companies that are geared to the pocketbooks of small businesses. The marketplaces offer four plan levels established by the affordable care act: bronze, the least fancy plan, and silver, gold and platinum.A small business can enroll any time during the year as long as enough of its employees participate in its plan or have coverage elsewhere. Otherwise, your small business can sign up during open enrollment between Nov. Bronze plans: These typically have a lower monthly premium but a sky-high deductible.Some experts say a small business won’t have much leverage to negotiate costs until it has 50 employees.Once you sign up for a plan, your small business could qualify for a sliding-scale tax credit of up to 50% of the cost of premiums you pay on behalf of your employees.Marketplaces in California and Colorado are open to businesses with 1-100 employees.A calculator to figure out your full-time equivalent count is available here.

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