MIAMI, April 19, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- The New Group Health Insurance Mandate has forced employers to provide health insurance to their full time employees while paying a minimum of 50% of the plan premium. If employers do not abide to these rules, they could be fined up to $2000 per full time employee. At the moment, there are companies that offer their services to help employees enroll into health plans at no cost to the employer.
There is one option that is gaining popularity among these services, especially among those who are new to health insurance plans. Employers are heading in this direction due to low participation rates of employees in qualified major medical plans. Around 35% of employees actually select a major health plan and even fewer low income employees do, at 15 to 20%. This health plan enrollment program assists employees in enrolling in a health plan. The online enrollment program helps evaluate employees' needs and presents employees health care information in a universally understandable manner and employees do so off the clock on their own time saving the employer even more. This option is made available through consulting with BenaVest, a Group Health Insurance Company.
When it comes to why employees are not enrolling in medical plans Joe Gannon, owner of BenaVest, thinks, "There are three typical reasons employees do not enroll in the major medical plans." First is affordability. In most cases the lowest priced plans are $100 a month out of the employees pay, which is too much for many American citizens, given the cost of living and inflation in highly populated employment rich areas of the country. Second, is competition with Obamacare. Most minimum wage employees can get Obamacare for $20 per month, with a zero deductible and $5-$10 copay. Many employees choose Obamacare even after BenaVest explains to them the subsidies are only available to employees where the employer is not offering affordable coverage and if they receive a subsidy while the employer is offering coverage they could be held responsible for the amount paid by the government (on average about $3600.00 annually). During the Obamacare application process, employees are asked if they are eligible to receive health care from their employer. If they answer yes then they are no longer eligible for Subsidy, Tax Credit, otherwise known as Obamacare. The third reason is laziness and irresponsibility. Even with the services offered by benavest.com, employees will still never physically log in and select their plan in a timely manner. Gannon says that when group meetings are held with employees and options are explained clearly and decisively employees elect to still apply for Obamacare incorrectly, so in turn BenaVest Agents have employees declining coverage to sign an agreement, protecting the employer from being sued at a later date.
Gannon says that, "Government marketplaces such as SHOP are inefficient. SHOP is only suitable for companies that have 25 or fewer employees with a low average income. To get the tax credit which makes health plans affordable a company would need a staggering 70% participation rate. On average, companies with low income employees have a low participation rate. This makes SHOP ineffective. The only way to make SHOP effective is to have the employer pay a high percentage of the plan to offset the low participation rate".
The enrollment program is passing along huge savings to employers. On average, they are saving 80% considering the imposed penalties. For example, benavest.com last enrollment was of a company of 80 employees only 23 of the 80 employees enrolled into a health plan. If the employer did not offer coverage, the employer could face a fine up to $2000 per full time employee, totaling $160,000. The employer does decide to offer coverage at $230.00 per month with a $1500 deductible and a $35 copay for the primary Doctor. The employer is mandated to pay 50% of the premium. Given this information, the employer would pay $31,740 per year. This would save the employer $128,260 per year. In addition, employers will hang on to more valued employees and also recruit more valued employees. Employers not in compliance with the new rules have been affected by the Employer Mandate. Companies with over 100 full time employees were obligated to cover 70% of the premium in 2015. However as of 2016, companies with over 50 full time employees must cover 95% of the premium. Clearly, the employer mandate has affected many businesses. To avoid hefty fines, companies are flocking to companies such as benavest.com to be helped the process of health care plan selection and implementation. There are plenty of benefits to using services such as benavest.com, not just the avoidance of fines.
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