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How Group Health Insurance Premiums Are Calculated and How You Can Manage Them

by Tim AustinSeptember 5, 2017 8:00 AM

Small business owners weigh many factors when deciding whether to invest in a group health insurance plan, but oftentimes the decision comes down to dollars and cents. The Kaiser Family Foundation’s 2016 Employer Health Benefits Survey notes that the high costs of insurance premiums are the primary reason why firms won’t offer health benefits. Even for business owners who do offer plans, rising insurance premiums can create a lot of stress and confusion, especially if the owner doesn’t know how these premiums are calculated and how they can manage them.

Employers can have many questions for group health providers, and that includes exactly how much they can expect to spend. Here’s a rundown on what the insurance industry uses to calculate your group health insurance coverage premium, as well as some strategies that can lead to lower costs.

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Benefits

Questions that Small Business Owners Should Ask a Group Health Insurance Provider

by Tim AustinAugust 29, 2017 8:00 AM

It’s always a good idea to get more information. For a small business owner, that extra information can be the difference between finding the right group health coverage for your business.

Even if you have a good grasp on the basics of group health insurance, it doesn’t hurt to ask a provider a few important questions before you purchase a plan for your business. Here are some key things that you should ask a provider about group health insurance coverage.

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Benefits

Group Health Insurance Basics for Small Business Owners

by Tim AustinAugust 22, 2017 8:00 AM

Managing health insurance for a business can get complex in a hurry, especially if you’ve never dealt with group plans before. When it comes to offering healthcare coverage, you’ll quickly find that not all health insurance plans work the same way. 

Instead of getting overwhelmed, it’s a good idea to step back, take a breath, and start with the basics. Let’s go over what you should know about group health insurance before you start offering plans  to your employees.

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Benefits

Dealing with Healthcare Uncertainty

by Andrew SzczesniakAugust 16, 2017 8:00 AM

Towards the end of July, the Republican Party made a couple of attempts to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. When the Senate couldn’t pull together a consensus on a replacement bill, they moved forward with a straight repeal bill. Both attempts failed.

Where does that leave a business owner who’s trying to figure what to do about healthcare? Two recent articles help shed a little light on what to expect.

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Benefits

Are the ACA Exchanges Collapsing?

by Andrew SzczesniakJune 4, 2017 8:00 AM

When the Affordable Care Act passed in late 2010, one of the major tenets of the plan was the creation of healthcare exchanges in every state. These exchanges would be state-run with federal seed money used to create them. People who didn’t have coverage or had unaffordable coverage through their employers would be able to buy subsidized plans at a comparatively low cost.

The exchanges began with the implementation of the ACA in 2014. Of the 50 states, 23 of them were run by the federal government. In late 2015, it was reported that 12 of the 23 federally-run state exchanges were shutting down due to unsustainable losses. In some areas, things have gotten worse.

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Third Party Administration

Advantages of a Professional Employer Organization: Compliance

by Tim AustinMarch 3, 2017 8:00 AM

As a business owner, you get to make the rules in  your own company. However, there are still plenty of regulations and laws that can impact your business.

It can be difficult for owners to keep track of every single rule and avoid non-compliance costs when they’re  busy, well, running a business. That’s why it can pay to invest in human resource outsourcing through a Professional Employer Organization. A PEO can help your business stay in line with complicated regulations to help you keep your HR functions in order. Here are areas  where a PEO can help save you some money.

Image of compliance needs for a business. Learn how human resorce outsourcing with a PEO can help with compliance.

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Grab Bag

How will the ACA impact your business in 2017?

by Andrew SzczesniakJanuary 13, 2017 8:00 AM

As a sales rep for a Professional Employer Organization, I have spent the last four years talking with business owners who were worried about the impact of the Affordable Care Act on their businesses and employees. In many cases, I helped them find a cost-effective solution that helped them gain control of one of their most uncontrollable costs. Sometimes, I didn’t. Sometimes, the uncertainty of the previous two election cycles caused them to freeze up, maintain their status quo and hope for the best.

Now, we are about to embark on the Donald Trump era. For many, this is a sign that the ACA is going away and they can go back to things as they were. Perhaps so, but were things all that great before?  

The reality is that it’s impossible to predict with any certainty what will happen in the next 12 months, let alone the next two years. A recent article on Smart Business’ website does have some thoughts on it that I would like to share and expand on.

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Benefits

Have you Received an ACA Notice?

by Andrew SzczesniakOctober 7, 2016 8:00 AM

In addition to an upcoming national election, we are now quickly approaching open enrollment season for the Affordable Care Act. This is the time of year when people can  apply for healthcare coverage through the exchanges and look for income-based subsidies to help them offset some of their insurance costs.

It’s also the time when employees who don’t feel they have an adequate or affordable employer-sponsored health plan may  seek out coverage and subsidies through the exchanges. While an employer may be tempted to find relief in one less person to cover (and pay for), there may be some repercussions.

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Benefits

Employers and the ACA

by Andrew SzczesniakMarch 29, 2016 8:00 AM

As the Affordable Care Act heads into its third full year of existence (some provisions started before 2014), there doesn’t seem to be any more clarity for business owners and what they should do. If you have 50 or more employees, do you offer it? Do you succumb to the ever increasing costs and drop coverage and pay the penalty? If you’re under 50 employees, should you drop it and get out while you can? Are there any more changes coming down the road that you need to know about? Well, a recent article in New England Journal of Medicine may help shed a little light on things for you.

GMS provides Affordable Care Act guidance for businesses.

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Human Resources

Low-income Earners and the ACA

by Andrew SzczesniakOctober 29, 2015 8:00 AM

In January of 2016, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) will begin to directly impact businesses with between 50-99 employees. While health insurance rates have been impacting business owners since the start of the ACA several years ago, those companies with 50-99 employees haven’t had to offer healthcare or face a fine. That’s changing in a couple of months.

The interesting thing about the ACA is that the very people it is supposed to help, low income workers, seem to be the ones least interested getting their healthcare, even when it’s offered by their employers.

Offering coverage and the Affordable Care Act.

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