Contrary to popular opinion in a volatile market, it is almost always a smart business move to offer some form of group insurance to workers. The benefit markedly boosts employee loyalty, aside from the fact that coverage maintains the health of those that work for you. Group insurance is also surprisingly affordable. When you buy a plan for a large group, premiums fall; the economics of scale kick in when there are bigger numbers involved. And smaller groups than you may think are considered “big” in the insurance realm.
Additionally, you can form a group of small business owners and leverage the numbers to get reasonably priced group insurance. It’s worth the effort to reduce the premiums for personal insurance. There are many ways to form the group you want to get the kind of insurance you need — not just for your workers, but for yourself as well.
Many workplaces offer group disability coverage, but not many workers understand just what that coverage means for them.
In a nutshell, group disability insurance covers an individual for a certain percentage of regular pay if he or she can’t work due to an illness or injury. In many cases, policies cover up to 60 percent of that regular pay. The figure may vary according to the base rate of pay on the policy. Once an individual claims benefits, he or she pay taxes on them: they are regarded as income, just like a regular paycheck. However, the income is derived from an insurance company, not from your regular employer.
Every group disability insurance policy is different, but all are likely to feature “Any-Occupation” and “Own-Occupation” disability categories. The Own-Occupation category covers the insured 24/7 for 24-36 months. if the employee still can’t work after that period of time, the insurance company may dispute continued payments under the claim and insist that the person find work in another area if he or she is capable of working.
Each situation is different, and it pays to know just what your group disability insurance covers. Ask questions and find out before you find that you need to use it.
For many Americans, life insurance enrollment presents a contentious decision. Many wonder how to pay for health insurance alone; the addition of life insurance seems overwhelming. Fortunately, if your employer offers group life coverage, your costs will be significantly lower than they would be if you chose to buy a policy on your own. Check to see what your workplace offers. There are always advantages under the umbrella of a group life insurance policy.
Also, remember that, even though some of the events covered by your group life insurance will not be applicable to your situation right now, they may become relevant later. Consider your lifestyle carefully before declining to enroll in a group life policy at work. It’s usually better to be safe and covered than sorry and stranded later.
Workers at smaller companies are often offered group health insurance as a benefit. In fact, many potential employees consider it a major factor when making their employment decisions.
Group health insurance is frequently less expensive than far more limited personal insurance policies.
Individual insurance is often very expensive. Even if a person opts to buy personal coverage through a health exchange, he or she will likely pay more than a person participating in a company group policy.
Group health premiums are lower. Workers may not be denied coverage because of pre-existing conditions, a major benefit for many Americans. Additionally, most group health plans let workers extend their coverage to their families and/or dependents.
Whether the group health plan offers HMOs or PPOs (the two major types of plans), there is usually something for everyone.
If you have the chance to get group health insurance for a lower cost than your personal policy, you and your family will benefit.
If you run a small business, you may wish to offer your employees group health insurance. It’s an excellent, attractive offering that has short- and long-term benefits for your workers. Group insurance allows employees to get medical, dental and perhaps vision insurance for a lower cost than they would find individually. With group insurance offerings, your company can better compete to hire the best potential employees.
There are two types of small group insurance: Preferred Provider Organizations (PPO) and Health Maintenance Organizations (HMO). With PPO insurance, those enrolled pay a deductible but may see any doctor they wish within in a specific network. Participants do not need referrals for diagnostic appointments or to see specialists. If they see a medical professional out of their specified network, they pay higher fees and make a claim for the difference later. HMOs restrict whom a patient may see and what services they may get. Any treatment must be provided by a medical profession within the network. The primary doctor manages the patient and makes referrals when needed.
Before choosing a plan, find out as much as you can about each. Decide what suits your business environment and workers best.
While many companies are either eliminating or downsizing health benefits for their workers, group insurance still remains one of the most cost effective choices to still offer employees health care benefits. Even though the economy appears to be variable on any given day according to what is happening in the White House, businesses need to stay running and offer their workers some form of health insurance.
In the alternative, those same workers could also opt to apply for group insurance on their own, and take advantage of the lower rates and have choices over what they want for coverage. Many company controlled health insurance plans offer coverage for things people may never use, but are still paying for out of their salaries. Groups of like-minded individuals can band together and apply for group insurance the way they want it. It’s certainly better than having no insurance at all.
If you’re searching for affordable health insurance, do it for yourself.
These days, less than 25 percent of the population gets health insurance through their employers. If your employer does offer health insurance, you get what you get and at a price dictated by the company. Although it is a benefit to you, you may be paying for things you do not need or use. You may well be able to find health insurance for less by looking around. In other words, by opting to get your own individual plan, you may pay less.
Health insurance through a company means you are lumped, as one large group, with everyone else in the company. That will often include overweight individuals, smokers and those with serious illnesses. While that is life, you are paying for that. If you are in pretty good shape, and younger, looking around for affordable health insurance quotes makes sense. You could actually get a lot more insurance tailored to your needs for less.
What’s the best place to look for insurance quotes? You guessed it. Online. The coverage you find there is similar to what your employer may be offering, but the price is typically less. Additionally, you have a choice of insurance providers, deductibles and so forth. If you need something to fit your lifestyle and budget, you’ll find it online quickly.
Having your own health insurance means that no matter where you go if you change jobs, you still have insurance. Considering today’s shaky economy, it’s a good thing to have portable health insurance, as people are changing jobs at an ever increasing pace. You certainly do not want to be without health insurance, not when it means facing enormous medical bills that you would have no way of being able to pay.
While many Americans have opted out of having health insurance because they cannot afford it, the truth of the matter is that they cannot afford “not” to have it. The first time they need to see a doctor or go to emergency for a broken bone, they will end up facing a real dilemma —- how to pay for the care. Additionally, by 2014, you will be required to have coverage. Why not get it now while you have some choices available?
Clelland Green is with Benepath.com, a leader in providing health insurance quotes. Benepath provides individuals, families, and businesses with affordable health insurance quotes in just a few mouse clicks. To learn more, visit https://www.benepath.com.
When you start the process of searching for a health plan, the first step is getting quotes for yourself or your family. There are many places on the internet where you can do this, including Benepath, but there are also many places that tell you they provide quotes and then sell your information to multiple agents. Then all you get is a phone that will not stop ringing…
So, make sure you use a reputable site before you give anyone your information.
Once you have your quotes, you need to start your analysis and using a simple knock out process will help you get there a lot faster. Here is a summary of the best way to narrow your list of quotes:
- Set your budget as a range and eliminate all the quotes that are 10-15% more than your budget. Believe me, you want to consider quotes that are a little bit more because with health insurance – you get what you pay for and sometimes a few dollars more can mean big savings to you down the road.
- Decide if you want complete freedom of choice or whether you are willing to see just a select group of doctors. Then knock out all the plans that don’t provide you with the choice you want.
- Determine if having a copay for an office visit is worth the trade off for a much higher out of pocket expense in case you end up with a serious medical event. A broken leg can cost as much as $15,000 and I can tell you there are lots of consumers that bought plans with $30 copays thinking that was important and then ended up with a $5,000 bill from a broken leg. Then rule out the plans that don’t have the features you want.
After doing those 3 simple knockouts, you should be down to just a handful of plans. From there, you need to do a side by side comparison and decide which one gives you the most for your money.
At the end of the day, using an agent to help you through all of this is free and they have many plans you will not find online which may be a good alternative for you as well.
by: Clelland Green
by: Clelland Green
There are three key pieces of the Affordable Care Act which will cause health insurance premiums to rise faster than they would otherwise.
- Guaranteed Issue – The mandate will ease this expense, but providing everyone coverage regardless of their health will cause premiums for people who are healthy and presently buy their own insurance to skyrocket. This impact will be felt in the individual and small group markets and not in the large group market.
- More Demand without An Increase in Supply – If you significantly increase demand for any service or product and you do not have a corresponding increase in supply, prices will rise. If 30 million more people obtain health insurance (current CBO estimate is between 30 and 33 million by 2016) that will cause an increase in health care demand of at least 5% and possibly more. Most of this increase will come from the expansion of Medicaid which will create supply shortages throughout the country and will be felt particularly hard in urban areas. The result of this expansion will be further cost shifting to private insurance as Medicaid reimbursement rates are significantly below market rates – even heavily discounted market rates. Bottom line, doctors and hospitals will charge private plans more and the premiums for those plans will rise.
- Minimum Coverage – Currently people buy high deductible plans and other health insurance products where the benefits are limited in such a way as to provide an affordable plan. Exchange based plans do not have those features. Aetna’s CEO Mark T. Bertolini gave the WSJ’s health blogan example of a 40 year old Texan currently buying a $5000 deductible policy is paying $189/month and the cheapest exchange plan will cost him more than $450/month. The $3000 premium difference more than offsets the higher out of pocket expenses of the cheaper plan, which are not $3000 more than the bronze plan.
While these provisions may be popular, they are going to have a significant impact on the lives of middle class Americans who desparately need reform that will help control the cost curve.
Getting a great plan is not hard if you do your searching for health insurance in Texas by visiting the right website and work with a good insurance agent.
From Houston to El Paso, Benepath has been working with local insurance agents throughout the state to provide a variety of quotes and quality coverage to consumers. Agents who work with Benepath represent all of the major insurance carriers including Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas, Humana, Aetna, UnitedHealthcare, CIGNA and the local HMO’s as well.
Texas small businesseses have been getting help at Benepath.com since 2006 as well. Many of these agents offer group health insurance as well as ancillary benefits like group dental, life and disability insurance. Many of these agents also provide retirement plans like 401(k)’s and Simple IRA’s.
Good luck in your search!
by Clelland Green