Updates on the COVID-19 Crisis

Benefits Cafe began a COVID-19 Crisis Update page last week where we have information from governments and insurance companies about their revised policies to accommodate these unusual times.  The update page also has breaking news that should be helpful to businesses that are forced to make difficult decisions.  Today, [...]

By |March 25th, 2020 |Categories: Uncategorized|

Update: UnitedHealth Care Postpones Rollout of New Association Health Plans in California

Less than two weeks ago, I wrote a blog post that predicted that fireworks would hit California’s small group health insurance market with UHC’s new Association Health Plans.   Well,  sparks flew.  Yesterday, UnitedHealth Care announced that because of “regulatory inquiries over the past couple of weeks” UHC has suspended [...]

Fireworks Will Hit California’s Small Group Health Insurance Market with UHC’s New Association Plans

  UnitedHealth Care (UHC) kicked-off Summer 2019 with a bang.  During a webinar to their top brokers on July 1st, they made the game-changing announcement that they will introduce 9 new Association Health Plans (AHP) into the California small group marketplace (1-100 employees.) By screening enrollees for pre-existing medical [...]

Why Kaiser Permanente Small Group Benefits and Rates Continue to Lead the Field in California, 2019

On Wednesday, I was fortunate to be included in a round table discussion with the senior leadership of Kaiser Permanente's small group sales and account management team. To encourage discussion, Kaiser limited participation to a few key brokers. (2019 Kaiser Key Broker Engagement Luncheon, Pasadena, California. Third from [...]

Group Health Insurance Cost Trends and Benchmark Comparisons

Many employers want to know why medical insurance rates continue to rise and whether they're paying too much compared to other businesses. Two recently released reports address these questions:Medical Cost Trend: Behind the numbers 2019, is prepared by Price Waterhouse Coopers (PwC)'s Health Research Institute and it projects medical costs [...]

Can an employer contribute different amounts towards employee medical insurance?

NOTE: The answer to this question requires compliance with both the HIPAA Nondiscrimination Requirements and the IRS Section 125 Nondiscrimination Rules.  IRS Nondiscrimination Rules apply when employees make pre-tax paycheck contributions for employee benefits using a Section 125 Premium Only Plan (POP). If you are a client of Benefits [...]

California Small Business Medical Insurance 2016 4th Qtr. Renewals

Experts estimate that 50 to 70 percent of the small businesses in California that offer employee medical insurance will renew their plans in December 2016.  Many California small business medical insurance companies have begun to release their renewal rates for December 2016 and for many employers the renewal rates look very [...]

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