If you have 10 or more employees, a group disability benefit may be a valuable addition to your employee benefits package.
Group disability plans typically provide a totally disabled covered employee with a benefit of up to 60% of their pre-disability income, to a specified maximum, such as $10,000 a month. It can help to cover personal expenses as well as provide business overhead protection.
Advantages of a group plan include:
Drawbacks to group disability plans include:
When offering voluntary disability benefits or buy-up options to your employees, access to information is important. Determining how much disability insurance your employees need and can afford requires them to examine their income, assets, expenses and liabilities, and then to figure how long they could keep everything going if they were unable to work. Theodore & Associates can help you every step of the way! Call or email us today!
Nearly 17 million people have filed unemployment claims in the last three weeks with the U.S. Department of Labor. Forecasters predict as many as 20 million people could lose their jobs by the end of April. Millions of workers who have lost their jobs also will lose their health insurance. The potential severity of COVID-19 means that being uninsured could leave people at risk for catastrophic health care costs. Here are some key things people who lose their jobs or who are currently uninsured should know.
Coverage Options for People Who Lose Their Jobs or Are Uninsured
If you have insurance through the job you lost: Maintaining your coverage through COBRA is a possibility, but you might find a cheaper option through the Affordable Care Act’s marketplaces. As always, even though open enrollment is closed, anyone who loses a job with health insurance is automatically eligible for a special enrollment period through the marketplaces. The first thing to do after losing job-based coverage is visit HealthCare.gov to check out options. If you qualify for a premium subsidy or Medicaid, there may be options much cheaper than COBRA.
If you have coverage through the ACA marketplaces: If you lost your job, your income is likely dropping, which means you may qualify for a subsidy. Go to HealthCare.gov and update your income information.
If you have coverage through Medicaid: Keep your coverage and make sure your enrollment status is up to date, so you don’t lose your coverage if you forget to reenroll.
If you are uninsured, you have a few options — and there may be more in the coming weeks:
Recent Legislation and Executive Branch Actions on Coverage
Congress has passed three major emergency spending bills to address the pandemic and the administration has declared a national emergency. Here is what you should know about what this means for coverage:
The staggering economic disruption triggered by the coronavirus pandemic is revealing the importance of the Affordable Care Act in providing coverage options for people who lose their job-based insurance. But the pandemic also shines a bright light on the remaining holes in the system: 30 million people uninsured and at least 44 million who are underinsured because of unaffordable deductibles and copayments. The crisis will place added pressure on the states that have not yet expanded Medicaid and may encourage them to move forward with expansion. It also may push Congress to permanently patch the holes in our insurance system. If it does, the next time we face a public health crisis we can be secure in the knowledge that everyone has health coverage and that illness will not be compounded by personal financial catastrophe because of health care costs.
If you need assistance or don't know what your next step should be, feel free to call us and get help. We can offer Short Term Health Plans, Limited Medical Plans, and Major Medical Plans with loss of other coverage, to individuals who may be in need, or just offer friendly advice during this difficult time!
Group life insurance shows employees you value what matters most to them - their loved ones, and it is an integral part of most employee benefits packages. When provided by an employer, employees appreciate the value of life coverage and the additional security it provides to their families.
Life insurance can help employees protect their loved ones.
Did you know more than 35% of all households would feel a negative financial impact within 1 month after the death of the primary wage earner? Having life insurance can help your employees have confidence that, should they pass away, their family will have a financial safety net to replace lost income, cover final expenses, everyday living expenses, and long-term obligations that may otherwise cause them financial strain. Life insurance can even be used to help fund a child’s education.
It’s a key benefit to help you attract and keep quality employees.
When candidates are searching for a new job, benefits are a main differentiator, and prospective employees tend to consider a position’s benefits before they apply. That includes life insurance. Whether you cover the premium or offer employee-paid, voluntary life insurance, group rates make coverage through an employer an affordable option for employees. Including life insurance in your benefit package can make you stand out against organizations competing for the same candidates—and help you hold on to the good employees you’ve already hired.
It can be a budget-friendly option for you to offer.
If you think offering life insurance to your employees is out of your price range, think again. There are plenty of affordable life insurance solutions available. You can pay all, part, or none of your employees’ benefits, depending on your needs and goals. And keep in mind, group life insurance premiums are based on an overall assessment of a company’s risk. Spreading that risk helps bring group rates down, offering an affordable coverage option for employees.
Offering life insurance can help you enhance your company culture.
For many employers, building a strong company culture is about creating an environment that brings your core values to life. Culture is often what drives employee satisfaction. It makes employees feel like they belong, like they’re valued. That’s why including life insurance as an employee benefit plays a solid role in shaping your culture. It shows you put your employees first, and that you’re an employer who wants to help employees have a more secure financial future. For this reason, offering life insurance can help you see improvements in employee turnover, not to mention a general boost in productivity and company loyalty.
The best life insurance policies can be catered to your business needs
Your business—and employees—are unique. Fortunately, you can customize your group life insurance to make it the right match for you. As you’re considering life insurance policies, think about these questions:
Theodore & Associates offers free, comparative quotes on group life insurance from multiple insurance carriers so you can get the best possible rate, whatever your group size or benefit goals.
Contact us to find out how to protect your employees with the right life insurance.
The holiday shopping season will be here before you know it. But there’s an even more important shopping period to think about first: Open Enrollment.
Whether you’re buying your own health insurance for the first time or are considering switching plans, Open Enrollment may seem like a confusing, stress-inducing event. But it doesn’t have to be. Here’s everything you need to conquer this year’s health insurance signup process.
What is Open Enrollment?
Open Enrollment is the annual period of time when everyone gets a chance to sign up for health insurance for the coming year. This year, you may have heard the approaching enrollment period referred to as “Open Enrollment 2020”.
Employers that offer health benefits also have an annual enrollment period to allow employees to switch plans. While most companies kick off their signup process toward the end of the year (usually October or November), the start date and enrollment window vary from business to business.
Why is Open Enrollment a thing?
Before the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was passed in 2010, signing up for individual health insurance was often a challenge. If you had a pre-existing health condition, or had a family history of certain types of diseases, insurers could deny you coverage or charge you much higher rates than healthy people.
These practices prevented people from gaming the system by only signing up for insurance after they developed a health issue. But they also kept many consumers from getting coverage, either because they were denied insurance or because they couldn’t afford it.
After the ACA was passed, new consumer protections were put in place to ensure everyone can get health insurance, regardless of health history. It also provided subsidies to help lower-income people pay for coverage. But these new policies removed the check in place to prevent people from getting insurance only when they really needed it. And thus, Open Enrollment was born.
Under normal circumstances, Open Enrollment is your once-a-year chance to sign up for health insurance. If you miss this window, you have to wait until the next Open Enrollment period to get a new plan (with some exceptions – more on that later). By restricting signups to a limited time frame, insurers are protected from people dropping in and out of plans, paying for coverage only when they have an active health issue.
What’s changed for this year’s Open Enrollment?
For the most part, this year’s Open Enrollment will look a lot like last year. The signup dates are the same. The state and federal Marketplaces still exist, and are one of several ways you can purchase a health insurance plan for 2020. Subsidies will still be available for those that qualify for financial assistance.
Looking for new health insurance for 2020? Start a free quote here.
When is Open Enrollment?For health insurance plans beginning in 2020, Open Enrollment starts on November 1, 2019 and ends on December 15, 2019. But some states have extended the Open Enrollment period until January to give people more time to sign up.
What information do I need to collect for Open Enrollment?
In order to sign up for a plan during Open Enrollment, you’ll need a few key pieces of information, including:
Can I sign up for insurance outside of Open Enrollment?
If you don’t sign up for a health insurance plan during Open Enrollment, and your life circumstances remain the same, you’ll have to wait until next November for your next chance to enroll. However, if your life circumstances do change, you may be able to get insured during a Special Enrollment period.
Special Enrollment is a 60-day enrollment window that happens when you experience a qualifying life event – a fancy phrase for a significant change that impacts your status. Qualifying life events include things like:
Contact our Benefits Department today to learn more and get covered!