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

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 [...]

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

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 [...]

Health Care Reform for Small Businesses California – Video

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 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.

Covered California – Agent Training & Enrollment Website

Covered California, the new health insurance exchange in California has begun agent training. Kudos to them because they have accomplished a lot in a very short period of time. With this blog post I hope to give some first hand info and feed back on the training process and on the enrollment procedures and processes.

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

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.

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

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.

Covered California (Exchange) Announces a Few Individual Rates

Today, May 23, 2013, the California Health Benefit Exchange, Covered California, released the 2014 individual health plan rates for 25 and 40 year olds. As they said in their press release, “it is impossible to make a direct comparison of these rates to existing premiums in the commercial market.” Still, at first glance the rates don’t look too high – but there..

Health Care Reform Update: Action in Sacramento

Much is in flux with the ACA and we should accept that many good questions do not have answers – yet. Michael Lujan, Director of Sales and Marketing for Covered California advised us to “get the facts.” We should be comfortable saying: “here is what we know now and here is what has not been determined. We don’t have the information to answer all of the questions… at this time. ”

Health Insurers to Continue Medical Underwriting in 2014 Despite ACA Prohibition

It is my understanding that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) forbids medical underwriting in the individual and group markets beginning in 2014. However, today, April 18, 2013, I attended a panel discussion of large group health insurance carriers , where representatives from Aetna, Anthem Blue Cross, CIGNA and Health Net all stated that they would continue to medically underwrite groups with 50 or more employees.

CA Exchange Website Could Spell Trouble for Insurers & Consumers

On April 8th, 2013 Covered California/exchange/HBEX held a webinar for agents to describe their online enrollment process. Buried at the end of the presentation, slide 37 of 39 slides, was a screenshot of the page someone will see when he/she goes online to select a health insurance plan through Covered California. Bad news [...]