5 10, 2016

California Small Business Medical Insurance 2016 4th Qtr. Renewals

October 5th, 2016 |Categories: Changes in Medical Care, Health Insurance Reform, Small Business Articles, Small Group Health Insurance|

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 [...]

25 11, 2014

Group Health Insurance Rates Increase for 2015

November 25th, 2014 |Categories: ACA, Health Insurance Reform, Large Group Medical Insurance Articles, Small Business Articles|

Last week the Los Angeles Times reported that large employers estimate that the cost of group health insurance will increase about 5% in 2015. I was quoted in the last two paragraphs of the article, talking about the 2015 rate increases for California small businesses. We've seen rates increase from a few percent to twenty percent depending on the characteristics of the employees. While there are winners and losers among California employers; we have been able to change our clients to different insurance companies and different plans so that in most cases they won't have any increase and many of our clients will pay less for group health insurance in 2015 than they did in 2014.

7 11, 2014

For the Third Time DOL & IRS say an Employer Can NOT reimburse employees for individual health insurance plans

November 7th, 2014 |Categories: (SHOP) Covered California Small Business Articles, ACA, Health Insurance Reform, Individual health insurance vs group health insurance, Individual Medical Insurance Articles, Large Group Medical Insurance Articles, Small Business Articles|

Today the U.S. Department of Labor released yet another notice/guidance/ "FAQ" instructing employers that "an employer health care arrangement cannot be integrated with individual market policies to satisfy the market reforms."  Obstinate vendors continue to push their high cost TPA services and claim that an employer can cancel a group [...]

8 10, 2014

Vivity: the new hope for health care

October 8th, 2014 |Categories: ACA, Changes in Medical Care, Large Group Medical Insurance Articles, Small Business Articles|

Right before my eyes I saw the top executives from the top hospitals with the top executive from the top insurance company pledge to offer high quality medical care at lower cost. They described how they have aligned incentives for everyone to provide top patient care. If they can do that cost-effectively, they will share in the savings. If not, they will collectively share in the loss...This is a game-changer for health insurance.

5 10, 2014

Group Health Insurance vs Individual Coverage: Compare After-Tax Cost, Provider Networks & Plan Benefits

October 5th, 2014 |Categories: ACA, Covered California, Health Insurance Reform, Individual health insurance vs group health insurance, Individual Medical Insurance Articles, Large Group Medical Insurance Articles, Small Business Articles|

Perhaps a company could give employees a salary bonus or "taxable discretionary wellness stipend" so that employees can buy their own individual medical coverage. If you’re considering a salary bonus or "wellness stipend" for employees to purchase their own individual medical insurance you should consider the following... Tax and worker’s comp savings are THE major reasons that companies sponsor group health insurance plans rather than offering a taxable stipend or salary bonus...A salary bonus or taxable wellness stipend for health insurance is extremely tax inefficient and forces employees to purchase inferior health insurance plans in the individual market.

15 08, 2014

Should a company reimburse employees’ INDIVIDUAL health insurance cost rather than sponsor a GROUP medical plan?

August 15th, 2014 |Categories: ACA, Covered California, Health Benefit Exchange, Health Insurance Reform, Individual Medical Insurance Articles, Large Group Medical Insurance Articles, Small Business Articles|

With the high cost of health insurance many companies are considering alternative financing arrangements to group health plans.   The Affordable Care Act (i.e., ACA, Obama Care, Health Care Reform) created exchanges to help individuals purchase their own coverage.  Also, the ACA forbids insurance companies from asking questions about preexisting medical [...]

15 07, 2014

Newly Signed Law, SB 1446, Will Allow California Small Businesses to Keep their 2013 Medical Insurance Plan until December 2015

July 15th, 2014 |Categories: (SHOP) Covered California Small Business Articles, ACA, Health Insurance Reform, Small Business Articles|

On July 7, 2014 Governor Brown signed SB 1446 into law. This legislation will have a significant impact on the health insurance options for many small businesses in California.   Estimates are that up to 80 percent of small businesses in California “early renewed” their group health insurance plan in December [...]

22 10, 2013

Health Care Reform for Small Businesses California – Video

October 22nd, 2013 |Categories: (SHOP) Covered California Small Business Articles, ACA, Health Benefit Exchange, Health Insurance Reform, Small Business Articles|Tags: , , , , , , , |

With Health Care Reform (Affordable Care Act) (ACA), business owners want to know: •What's going to change? •How much will it cost? and, •What can I do to save money. We've created a short video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RcQ5j8mu_Bk that addresses these questions. The video also describes what will not change, including: •No requirement for small businesses to offer benefits; •Benefits continue to be a tax deductible expense for the employer and non-taxable compensation to employees; •Benefits continue to be an excellent way to attract and retain good employees.

6 09, 2013

Understanding California Health Care Reform / Obamacare / Affordable Care Act / ACA

September 6th, 2013 |Categories: (SHOP) Covered California Small Business Articles, ACA, Covered California, Health Benefit Exchange, Health Insurance Reform, Individual Medical Insurance Articles, Large Group Medical Insurance Articles, Small Business Articles, Videos|Tags: , , , , , , , |

We've prepared easy-to-understand videos that explain the new health care reform law (Affordable Care Ace, ACA, Obama Care). Topics include how to complete the required notices (Exchange, SBC & Glossary); an overview of individual and family coverage including Covered California; and problems of the current system that the ACA solves.

13 08, 2013

Covered California Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP) Exchange Rates

August 13th, 2013 |Categories: (SHOP) Covered California Small Business Articles, ACA, Covered California, Health Benefit Exchange, Health Insurance Reform, Small Business Articles, Uncategorized|

Given the rates SHOP released and the new rules for rating individual and small group health insurance, I am led to the conclusion that some small groups (and individuals) will likely pay much more than they currently do - while some may pay less.