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Small Business Health Insurance Trends 2020

by Tim AustinOctober 31, 2019 8:13 AM

Changes in healthcare are prompting many small business owners to rethink the role of employee benefits like health insurance at their companies. According to PricewaterhouseCoopers, health insurance premiums are expected to rise by 6 percent in 2020, which can weigh heavily on your bottom line. Below, we explored some of the top health insurance trends that will impact small businesses and how you can adapt in the ever-changing benefits landscape.

 Small business health insurance is changing in 2019.

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What the Updates to New Jersey’s Family Leave Laws Mean to Business Owners

by Makenzie RizzoOctober 14, 2019 8:00 AM

The state of family medical leave has been in flux in New Jersey over the past year. In February, Governor Phil Murphy signed an amendment to expand both New Jersey’s Family Leave Act (NJFLA) and Family Leave Insurance law (NJFLI). Those changes went into effect back on June 30, 2019, but they wouldn’t be the only adjustments to leave laws during the years.

As of Oct. 7, 2019, business owners have a pair of new laws to plan for when it comes to how the state processes leave applications. With so many changes, it can be hard to keep all the new family leave updates straight. To help, here’s a breakdown of what business owners need to know about the changes to family leave in New Jersey over the course of 2019 – and why it might be important to business outside the Garden State as well.

A mother taking family medical leave from work after the birth of her new child.

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Department of Labor Issues Final Rule on Association Retirement Plans: What it Means for Small Business Owners

by Tim AustinSeptember 16, 2019 2:04 PM

Retirement plans are one of the most valuable employee benefits offered by organizations today. According to the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), the vast majority of workers say having a retirement plan is critical to their overall job satisfaction. Perhaps that’s why this benefit is such a deal breaker for job hunters and one of the main reasons why so many workers stay with their current employers. 

It can be challenging for small businesses, however, to manage the administrative costs and compliance requirements associated with offering retirement savings plans. Only 53 percent of small-to-mid-sized businesses offer a retirement plan, with approximately 38 million private-sector employees without access to one through their employers.

The good news is that may be about to change. In July 2019, the Department of Labor (DOL) clarified the definition of “employer” within the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) in sponsoring a multiple employer contribution pension plan. In establishing the ‘final rule', which goes into effect Sept. 30, 2019, the DOL has made it easier and more cost-effective for small businesses to offer retirement plans to employees through Association Retirement Plans (ARPs).

 Retirement savings.

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The ACA “End Run” and What it Means for Business Owners

by Andrew SzczesniakApril 17, 2019 8:00 AM

When Donald Trump ran for the Presidency in 2016, a major plank of his platform was the repeal and replacement of the Affordable Care Act. In fact, pretty much every Republican in 2016 ran on that promise.

In the summer of 2017, several Republican Senators and every Democrat Senator torpedoed that promise by not agreeing to a plan. Since then, this administration has made several attempts to sink the ACA where they could.

A gavel of a judge blocking new association health plan rules meant to sink the affordable care act.

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The $9 Billion-Dollar Blunder

by Colin RhodesJanuary 23, 2019 8:00 AM

A recent article written by the Wall Street Journal  outlines some startling financial data in regard to our domestic health insurers and their cryptic billing process established by CMS (Center for Medicare/Medicaid Services). Although GMS typically focuses on the private insurance markets—as they are the most relevant for businesses—examining the continued failures of CMS may provide some insight as to why our domestic healthcare system operates so poorly and why prices for both public and private health insurance markets are sky-rocketing.  

Costs associated with the U.S. healthcare system. 

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How Michigan’s Paid Sick Leave Law Affects Business Owners (and What They Should Do About It)

by Philip GarbaczJanuary 9, 2019 8:00 AM

In the past, business owners in Michigan had the option of whether they wanted to offer paid sick leave for their employees. However, Michigan adopted the Earned Sick Time Act (ESTA) Sept. 5, 2018, making it the 11th state to have a mandatory paid sick leave law in effect. Within a few months, the state’s legislature amended the bill, adopting the Paid Medical Leave Act (PMLA) as a modified version of the initial act that will go into effect starting March of 2019. 

With all the changes in Michigan’s paid sick leave laws, it’s time for business owners in the state to take stock of exactly what the PMLA requires of them, if they should reevaluate their paid leave policies, and what they need to do to be compliant with the new law.

An employee staying home through her company’s paid sick leave policy. 

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The Different Types of Group Health Insurance

by Tim AustinOctober 25, 2018 2:42 PM

Health insurance is one of the most sought-after benefits, but not all plans work the same way. There are several different types of group health insurance that differ in terms of how the insurance is purchased and how it affects the group’s premiums and plan options. 

While all these plans have certain advantages and disadvantages, it’s up to you to decide which makes the most sense for your needs. Here are some of the common types of group health insurance options available for small businesses.

Different types of group health insurance plans for small businesses. 

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Fundamentals of the ACA: Where it Went Wrong, Part II – The Individual Mandate

by Colin RhodesSeptember 18, 2018 11:00 AM

Following a 19.1 percent-32 percent hike in 2018, 2019 Obamacare rates are expected to rise by double digit percentage points, again. Though speculation by market experts have resulted in a slew of responses as to why premiums have continued to rise, 2019’s increase is one of the most cut and dry responses by insurers to current reform changes. Within this article, we’ll explore the proverbial straw that broke the camel’s back, which happens to be one of the pillars the ACA was built on: the individual mandate.

Medical equipment sitting in front of rising costs of the current healthcare system.

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4 Workplace Wellness Trends You Should Consider for Your Business

by Tim AustinJuly 24, 2018 8:00 AM

When your employees are ailing, your business is also likely to suffer. The health and wellbeing of your employees can play a big part in your company’s success, as a happy, healthy workforce has several benefits, including:

  • Increased productivity
  • Reduced absenteeism
  • Decreased medical costs

Many small business owners have turned to workplace wellness programs to help improve the wellbeing of their employees. Over time, these programs have evolved to address specific issues to better serve employers and their employees. Here are some recent wellness trends than may be a good fit for your business.

An office worker stretching as part of the company’s workplace wellness program.

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The Differences Between PEOs and Brokers for Small Business Health Insurance

by Tim AustinJuly 17, 2018 8:00 AM

When small business owners decide to offer health insurance to their employees, they don’t have to find a plan by themselves. The process can be very complicated for people without an intimate knowledge of how health insurance works, so owners typically turn to brokers or PEOs to guide them through the process. While both PEOs and brokers have the same general goal—to find you quality, affordable health insurance for your business—they work in different ways.

Small business owner deciding between health insurances services between a PEO and a broker.

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