Guidelines for Employers Implementing a New Group Health Benefit

We all know that health insurance and other health-related benefits are highly sought out by individuals in the job search market. The benefits can support a group’s employee attraction and retention efforts, creating a culture in the workplace of security both in the health and financial arenas.

Dublin Health & Benefit Group LLC has brought group benefits to New Hampshire companies since 2005. We offer health benefits, dental, vision, life, accidental death and dismemberment, short term and long term disability insurance, accident insurance, and other enhancements. We support groups in their long-term goals by bringing them the tools to maintain stability in their organization through employee health benefit programs.

Below please find some common topics employers often want to ask us about. If you find you have further questions or would like to speak with one of our small group brokers about implementing a group benefits plan, we welcome you to contact us directly at 603-563-8820. We look forward to working with you and your employees!

Group benefits are more stable than the Obamacare insurance on the individual marketplace

The individually insured middle class will most understand this. Those earning just above the tax credit threshold (established annually by the federal government) are paying 100% of the cost of their health plan on Obamacare’s individual marketplace. While Dublin Health & Benefit Group enrolls individuals in the individual marketplace, advises them on strategies for capturing a tax credit, not everyone can qualify. There is great stress experienced each year by individuals insured on the marketplace. Having access to their company group plan can relieve these individuals greatly, taking the burden and hassles these individuals face each year on the individual marketplace.

Group health plans are richer, often offering access to out of state providers, and are offered at a more reasonable premium often partially or fully funded by their employer.

Funding a group plan can be a tax-deductible expense for employer and employee

Employer-funded group plans become a tax-deductible expense to the employer by reducing the gross annual income. Employee contributions toward their group health plan may be set up as a pre-tax payroll deduction (we can assist with completing a Section 125 Premium only plan).

Offering benefits to a subgroup of employees

Some small group carriers will ensure small groups who wish to “class out” a subgroup of their company to offer benefits. We have put this in place for groups with a large number of part-time employees who we did not offer benefits to. Another way to “class out” is to offer benefits to those paid on a salary versus hourly basis. It is possible, still, to offer benefits to the executive/management division though we must assess each group on a case by case basis to determine the most viable and sensible way of “classing out” a subgroup of the company.

How much should an employer fund?

Some employers fund 100% the employee and their dependent rate. Others fund 75%. Yet still, others fund just the employee rate. Depending on your organizational culture, employee need and salaries, the employer contribution level we recommend for a group will always be customized to take into consideration just what is necessary to meet the 75% (of eligible employees) participation rate.

We also want to recommend that you don’t fund so much so as to “buy” spouses off of their own company plan. We strive to capture and ensure only those who most need health insurance.

We’ve found that underfunding a plan ensures the plans imminent death with just a few staffing changes within a short amount of time and is not our recommendation for a growing and thriving business who values their employees.

A benefit is easier to give than to take away

Employer-funded contributions should be enough to encourage a consistent participate rate, as required by the carrier for a new plan, and each consecutive year at time of renewal. In New Hampshire, the small group carriers require 75% of all eligible employees to enrolled in the group health plan if there is a plan being offered. The formula for calculating eligible employees depends on several factors, and a qualified Broker from our company can discern this with the company owner, HR staff, or person in charge of implementing the plan.

What type of Brokerage agency will best serve a group’s needs?

Dublin Health & Benefit Group, LLC specializes in providing small group, individual, and Medicare health benefits. As our niche, we work with our clients to bring them the best-aligned product for their needs, as the lowest cost.

As independent brokers (we are not “captive agents”) we are able to shop all of the small group benefit carriers available to the New Hampshire small group market.

One agent, many products, multiple carriers = best value!

How are brokers compensated?

There are few exceptions, though in most circumstances our services are compensated by the carriers at the time of enrollment and monthly for the duration of the plan. Any group enrolling in a group plan, at any time of the year, through Dublin Health & Benefit Group can anticipate that we will be paid by the carrier. We continue to serve you, your employees, and the plan throughout the year even after enrollment.

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