small-business-insurance

Finding The Right Health Insurance Coverage for Small Businesses

Shopping for small business health insurance doesn’t need to be a hassle. With the proper guidance, you can find the health insurance coverage that fits into your employees’ budgets and makes you an attractive employer for top-tier talent.

The Benefits of Offering the Best Small Business Health Insurance

Employee benefits are one of the main deciding factors when applying for an open position at a company. If you offer health insurance, you’ll benefit from:

  • Attracting new talent to your workforce
  • Retaining talent and reducing employee turnover
  • Improving employee satisfaction
  • Boosting your business’s image

Finding the right health insurance coverage options requires you to do a few things:

Finding the Right Small Business Health Insurance

Compare Quotes from Multiple Insurers

Insurers are competing for your business, and every insurer has its own perks and benefits. For example, some will offer you better costs while pushing the cost to your employees. Other insurers may offer wellness options or better network availability.

Comparing quotes and options from insurers will help you:

  • Gauge the average cost for insurance in your industry and area
  • Consider all available coverage options
  • Much more

You can also work with a health insurance agent. An agent will help narrow down your options, work to find the best insurance for the value and explain how the entire process works. If you choose to work with an agent, you’ll often maximize the benefits available to your workforce.

Review All of the Basics

Insurance goes beyond price. As an employer, you should also consider the network coverage in your area. If there’s a lack of options in your area, this can lead to employees not being able use the full coverage.

You also want to consider:

  • The extent of the provider network and any plans for expansion
  • The ability for employees to compare plans
  • Deductible and out-of-pocket expenses
  • Mental health coverage options
  • Customer service options
  • State availability

If your office is on state borders, it’s crucial to ensure that there is coverage in both states. A few other things to consider are whether customer service is responsive and willing to help employees through any issues they may have. Spending accounts are becoming popular, and they may be something to consider, too.

And, of course, discuss plan options for small businesses. You may find canopy options work best, or you may need an HDHP option for your workforce.

Consider Supplement Plan Options

Health insurance doesn’t cover all health-related issues. For example, if a person has an infected tooth, it’s not covered under a typical plan. Supplement plans can fill in gaps in health insurance to maximize the benefits that your workforce receives.

A few supplemental plans to consider are:

Employees may need dental and vision care, and these supplemental plans will help them receive the care they need at a price they can afford.

Health insurance is one of the most basic, valuable benefits that you can offer to your workforce. If you follow the guidelines above, you’ll have a much easier time finding plans that work well for your employees and business.

Choosing insurance

5 Things You Must Know Before Purchasing Health Insurance

Small business health insurance is a must-have if you want to keep attracting top-tier talent to your workforce. However, before deciding on the best health insurance options for your employees, there are quite a few things that you need to consider:

5 Things You Must Know Before Purchasing Health Insurance

1. Types of Plans Available

What type of plan is best for your workers? You’ll need to ask the insurer to completely understand each plan’s options and costs. A few of the plan options that may be offered to you are:

Choose a plan, or multiple plan options, to find one that is ideal for your workforce. Once you have a plan, consider the provider network.

2. Provider Network

Provider networks must be extensive in your area so that employees can get the care they need conveniently. Review the network and what options are available for:

  • Primary doctors
  • Specialist
  • Etc.

If the network where the business is located and in the surrounding area is lacking, it may be in your best interest to consider other health insurance providers for your employers.

3. Premiums and Costs

Can your workforce afford the premiums? Can your business afford to offer the plan? It’s crucial to consider the average cost of premiums versus the salary employees are paid to learn whether the insurance is a good choice for all parties.

As an employer, you may also opt to pay more to lower premiums or even cover 100% of the insurance, but it’s often difficult for a newer small business to cover these types of expenses.

4. Deductibles for Employees

Cost must also include deductible options for employees. The lower the deductible, the higher the insurance premiums will be. However, you should consider whether the insurer offers a variety of options that will include:

  • Different deductibles
  • Varying co-pay options
  • Coinsurance
  • Prescription coverage

Small businesses that want to offer the best for their employees must consider the out-of-pocket expenses for their staff. You may have to pay more to offer a better insurance plan or can cover all medical premiums, but you must consider the overhead and how it impacts your business in the long term.

5. Does the Plan Keep Employees Healthy?

Health is reliant on a person’s wellness. Some insurers offer wellness options, which provide the following to employees:

  • Incentives to join programs
  • Discounts on premiums
  • Cash rewards
  • Gym memberships

Wellness programs encourage your workforce to make smarter, healthier decisions in life. Through wellness programs, you’ll offer bonuses to employees while also helping them live happier, healthier lives in the process.

Many plans are starting to offer wellness programs, and it’s something to consider when choosing an insurance option for your employees.

Offering the best small business health insurance possible will strengthen your workforce, improve employee satisfaction, and protect them. However, if you have any questions or need to know more about choosing a plan, we can help.

health-insurance-agent

The Benefits Of Hiring A Health Insurance Agent

Health insurance agents help people, just like you, navigate complex insurance options. Paperwork, exclusions, and inclusions make understanding what’s included in your insurance frustrating and confusing.

A health insurance agent helps make all of these complications trivial.

In fact, you’ll benefit from hiring an agent in many ways, including but not limited to the following:

5 Benefits of Hiring a Health Insurance Agent

1. Coverage for Price Considerations

Insurance companies make coverage options complex and difficult to understand. You might sign up for a more expensive plan while receiving fewer benefits than with a cheaper plan.

When you work with an agent, they’ll ensure that you maximize your coverage.

For example, if you can only pay $100 a month for insurance, the agent will work to find the absolute best plan in this price range so that your money goes as far as possible. Your agent will also have a better understanding of your healthcare needs and will find a plan that includes the coverage you need.

2. Local Insurance Knowledge

If you’re a business owner looking for insurance options for your small business, an agent is an invaluable asset to have by your side. Local agents:

  • Understand your business and its unique needs
  • Work with insurers that know your business and offer custom insurance options

Local insurance knowledge is ideal for business owners because the agent already has connections in the industry that can help.

3. Clear Options Presented to You

Insurance agents know that insurance is very complicated. When you work with an agent, they’ll spend the time to make coverage as transparent as possible. The agent will provide you with:

  • Multiple insurance options that fit into your budget
  • Transparent costs and coverage options

With so many insurance options available, agents make getting health insurance as simple as possible. Of course, you’ll still have many choices to make, but when they’re all presented to you clearly, it’s easier to find a perfect plan.

4. Personalized Service

Your agent provides personalized service that includes asking questions and getting answers from insurance companies. Since these professionals already have contacts at many insurance companies, they’ll rapidly narrow down your insurance options while offering a personalized service that can save you time and money.

5. Save Yourself Time

Finally, you’ll save yourself a lot of time when working with an agent. You won’t have to scour through dozens of plans, ask questions to insurers or do anything else. Instead, you only need to work with a single agent that handles all of these nuances for you.

Your agent is your point of contact, and since you hire them to find a plan for you, all you need to do is sit and wait for them to get back to you with plan options that you make prefer.

If you need health insurance and want to maximize your coverage while also paying the best price, hire a health insurance agent. These professionals know how to navigate complex insurance plans and make them simple to understand.

a Dental Insurance Provider

Pro Tips for Picking a Dental Insurance Provider

Dental care is a necessity, but traditional insurance plans do not include dental insurance options. However, with over 90% of people over the age of 20 having at least one cavity, it’s crucial to consider the right type of dental insurance to cover the expense of major dental work.

If you’re trying to pick an insurance policy, consider the following tips to help you get started.

Tips for Picking a Dental Insurance Provider

1. Learn About Coverage Structure

Dental insurance is different from health insurance. Your health insurance provider likely starts paying for 100% of your medical bills after you meet a certain deductible threshold. Dental options are slightly different because they often have a 100/80/50 structure.

The structure is broken down into:

  • 100% of preventative care
  • 80% of fillings, extractions, root canals and similar
  • 50% for major procedures, such as implants, bridges and crowns

If you need to see a cosmetic dentist, this isn’t covered under a normal plan.

2. Research In-network Dentists in Your Area

Since you must go to in-network dentists, it’s crucial to know the options that you have around you. Often, you’ll find a single dentist in the area with some cheaper plans, and if you don’t like the dentist, you have to pay out of pocket for another one.

Before signing up for any policy, always see the in-network options in your area.

It’s always better to find an insurance provider that has many in-network dentists in the area so that you have greater freedom when choosing one. Otherwise, you may have to travel further to go to the dentist, and if you have any serious work done, this isn’t ideal.

3. Ask Your Employer First

You can go and find your own dental insurance, but your employer may have options available. Group insurance policies keep costs down, and if your employer does have this option for you, compare it to what you can get on your own.

Also, you may be able to seek group insurance policies through the following:

  • Seniors may find options through AARP
  • Medicaid may have plans
  • Affordable Care Act marketplace may have opportunities

Again, you can also go and sign up for your own plan at any time.

4. Consider the Wait Time

Many people assume that once they pay their first premium, they can finally go and get the dental implants or major work they’ve been putting off. But, unfortunately, insurers will often only offer coverage for preventative and basic care during the first six to 12 months.

If your premiums over this time exceed the cost of the procedures you need, it may be better to get these procedures before securing your policy.

Finally, you’ll want to be cautious of what your policy covers because cheaper policies will offer less coverage. Consider the dental work you need now and in the future before deciding which policy to choose.

If you’re not sure which dental insurance provider is the right choice for you, work with a broker who can help you find a policy that fits perfectly into your budget.

Open enrollment

Open Enrollment is Over. Let’s Look at Some Options Still Available

For workers or anyone that can no longer open enroll, there are a few options still available that will provide coverage.

Special Enrollment Period

Healthcare.gov does have special enrollment periods that may be triggered on an individual basis. These periods can be triggered by the following:

• Household changes, such as a divorce, marriage, adopting or having a child

• Change of residency to an area that no longer offers the same insurance

• Loss in coverage

• Legally obtaining US citizenship

If you enter into service or exit for the AmeriCorps, NCCC or VISTA, you may be able to enter into special enrollment. You can also qualify if you become recognized or granted membership to a tribe under the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act.

Qualifying for special enrollment will require you to fill out an application that will verify your claims and allow you to take advantage of special enrollment periods.

State-Run Exchanges

Most states had their exchanges end on January 15, but it’s essential to see if your state has a different deadline. Some states kept their enrollment open even longer, and Idaho was the only state not to extend its deadline.

While you might have missed these exchanges in 2022, they can be extended during any year.

Medicaid and CHIP Options

Medicaid and CHIP programs are open to Native Americans all year long. However, if you’re not Native American, certain qualifying events will allow you to enroll for either of these insurance options.

For example, you may qualify if you:

• Lose coverage

• Move to an area with different insurance options

• Become a legal citizen

• Adopt or birth a child

• Get married or divorced

If a trigger event occurs, act as swiftly as possible to secure your health insurance coverage.

Medicare Special Enrollment

Medicare also has its own special enrollment periods that you may qualify for, depending on eligibility. The initial period begins when you either reach the age requirement of Medicare or become disabled and lasts for a period of seven months.

Fall enrollment is also an option and lasts from October 15 to December 7.

Otherwise, you may be able to enroll under the general enrollment period, which runs from January 1 to March 31. During this period, you can apply for Medicare Part B. If you want to apply for Part C or D, this period will be from April 1 to June 30 and will begin on July 1.

Short-term Plans

Depending on the state where you live, short-term insurance plans may be offered. Federal regulations allow many short-term plans, with renewals, to last up to 36 months. Unfortunately, some states do have rules that are restrictive and may prevent you from obtaining a plan.

If you missed open enrollment, it’s worth seeing if a short-term plan is available in your state.

Open enrollment comes around every year. If none of the plans above fit into your needs, you’ll need to wait until the next enrollment period, which starts in November.