How to Find the Right Small Business Health Insurance Plan
Published on June 21, 2018
Updated July 30, 2019
As a small business owner, you know better than anyone what it is that makes your firm unique. From the industry you operate in, to the products you sell, to each member of your staff, there are myriad factors that set you apart from the competition. You need to take all these features into account when selecting small business health insurance. By assessing small group health insurance plans and comparing them to your unique needs, you can select the group coverage policy that works best for your employees.
eHealth is committed to helping you navigate the small business health insurance selection process to the extent that we can, so let’s explore some ways that you can go about shopping to find a group plan that suits your small business.
Understanding small group health insurance plans
Finding the right group coverage for your employees begins with understanding how small business health insurance works. It is particularly important to consider:
- Coverage Extent– Small business owners with 50 or less employees are not required by law to offer group health insurance. But if you do offer coverage, it must be extended to all qualifying full-time employees. You can choose to cover part-time employees as well, but the offer must be extended to everyone at that employment level, according to Health Coverage Guide. In many cases, employees can add dependents to the plan, although employers can choose whether or not to contribute to their premiums.
- Cost Structure– As with most forms of coverage, the cost of small business health insurance is split between deductibles, copays, and premiums. Most health insurance companies have a variety of plan choices, which all structure costs differently.
- Subsidies & Incentives– Depending on the size of your business and where you’re located, you may qualify for any number of subsidies, tax credits, or other government incentives to help you pay for health insurance.
eHealth offers you the resources and information you need to understand these and all other elements of small group health insurance plans. We also offer online marketplaces where you can compare different group coverage options. By providing unbiased information and a wide selection of policies, we empower you to make the best possible choice for your employees.
Knowing your staff’s needs
In order to make the best choice for your staff, you first need to know what type of small business health insurance will suit them best. Thus, while you look at possible small group health insurance plans, it’s a good idea to involve your workers in the group coverage selection process by:
- Asking Directly– The simplest way to get your employees involved in the group coverage selection process is to ask them what kind of coverage they want. Show them the small group health insurance plans you’re looking at, and ask if there are any other kinds of plans you should consider. More broadly, ask what they’d like to get out of group coverage.
- Assessing Their Needs– Besides asking employees what type of coverage they’d want, you should consider factors in the workplace that affect their coverage needs. For example, if you work in a relatively hazardous industry or location, there’s a heightened chance that employees will need to use their small business health insurance on a regular basis. In that case, it might make sense to select a plan with higher premiums but lower deductibles and copays.
- Perceiving Care Priorities– No small business health insurance policy can cover everything, so you should prioritize benefits based on the unique features of your workplace. Say you work in an industry where employees experience a lot of emotional stress and strain. It may make sense to pay more for group coverage that includes counseling and psychological services. Likewise, if employees’ eyes are frequently strained on the job, you should look at small group health insurance plans that include vision coverage, or you can look at vision plans to add to the health benefits offered at your small business.
Only you and your employees can decide what unique coverage suits you best. But once you’ve made that decision, eHealth offers all the resources you need to obtain that coverage. For more information, or to compare small group health insurance plans, visit our website today.
Keep in mind that each plan has its own terms and limitations, so be sure to check the official plan documents to understand how that specific plan works.
This article is only for general information and may not be updated after publication. Consult your own tax, accounting, or legal advisor instead of relying on this article as tax, accounting, or legal advice.