Employer Health Plans Options: Less Than 50 Employees
As a small employer (fewer than 50 Full Time Equivalent Employees) you have no legal obligation to offer your people medical insurance and you will not be subject to a fine if you do not. However, with the drastic changes in the individual medical insurance market that began on January 1, 2016, you may find that you can attract quality employees by offering a comprehensive plan of insurance that they cannot purchase on their own.
In Texas all Blue Cross individual medical policies are HMO only. Humana offers only one PPO plan – the high deductible, no-first-dollar benefit, HSA compatible plan. United Health Care offers only EPO coverage and has announced that they will not offer individual medical insurance in 2017. Aetna has also arranged all of their individual medical plans in the EPO model with different networks of providers depending on the “metallic” level of your plan.
In short, the individual medical market offers fewer choices than you can provide to your employees with a group medical plan.
In Texas we require 2 employees to form a group. At least one employee must not be related by blood or marriage to the employer.
Sponsoring a group medical plan that can cover you and your family as well as your eligible full-time (more than 30 hours per week on average) employees is an important step for you as an employer. As the old saying goes, “the devil is in the details!”
In today's uncertain economic times, you need all the help you can get. To attract and retain the quality employees that will help you succeed you may find that a robust benefits package can give you a competitive edge. And, when revenues are challenged, you must provide those benefits at a cost that won't bust your budget. We would encourage you to read our outline of services (here) and consider this: We are small business people also, and we clearly understand that benefits must fit the overall stragetic plan for your business. To discuss how you can improve your employee morale with a richer benefits package, while at the same time controlling costs, give us a call. In San Antonio metro area call 210 822-2333-everywhere else in Texas call (800) 880-9733
Below is a quick overview of the most common types of benefit plans
Major Medical Insurance
Since M A R is an independent agency, we are free to recommend the carrier and the plan that is best suited to your unique situation. Full coverage medical plans are available from every carrier admitted to do business in Texas including: Aetna, Blue Cross-Blue Shield, Cigna, Humana, and UnitedHealth Care. Additionally, M A R can represent your group with a local provider group: Valley Baptist System, Scott & White, Community First, and others; or, if you are a governmental group, we can provide Texas Municipal League coverage.
Dental and Vision Insurance
In addition to the carriers listed above, dental and vision plans are also available from many other specialty carriers. Dental and vision plans are available as employer-pay-all or employee-pay-all, or on an employer subsidized basis, where the employer and employee share the cost.
Life and Disability Insurance
These valuable benefits are available either as employer-paid benefits or as voluntary plans paid by employee contributions.
Voluntary Supplemental Insurance Plans
Accident, Cancer, Critical Illness, Hospital Surgical, Intensive Care, Long Term Care, Family Life Insurance: M A R makes these popular and important supplemental insurance benefits available through many carriers including AFLAC, Alstate, Colonial Life, Reliance Standard, and Unum.
Payroll Deducted Auto and Homeowners Insurance
Through our wholly-owned property and casualty insurance subsidiary, A.R.M. Insurance Agency, Inc ., we can offer your employees the convenience of payroll deduction for these important coverages and potential savings as well. Affording your employees the opportunity to discuss their entire insurance program with our professional insurance counselors is a benefit that can provide big rewards for minimal invstment on the employer's part.
Miscellaneous Benefit Plans
We also have experience with unconventional benefit offerings including: day care allowance, legal benefit plans, travel discount plans, health club and other membership plans, veterinary pet plans, and many others.
We encourage you to give us a call to discuss your strategy for employee benefits, but if you would like to have us prepare a proposal for your consideration, click here for the census form that we will need to go to work for you.