Understand What You’re Getting with Your Small Business Insurance Plan
Published on December 18, 2017
When buying health insurance for your small business, it’s important to know what you’re getting with each plan you choose to offer your employees. The Affordable Care Act (ACA) requires insurance companies to give you specific information that outlines what is offered with each plan, and breaks down the costs.
What is the Summary of Benefits and Coverage?
The Summary of Benefits and Coverage is a document made available to you by insurance carriers. The Summary of Benefits and Coverage should be available to you before purchase, so that you can use it to help compare plans and make decisions. This is available for all individually-purchased or employer-based health-plans, including small business plans.
Insurance companies must give you:
- An easily understood document outlining the health insurance policy’s Summary of Benefits and Coverage
- A glossary that defines health insurance terms, such as “out-of-pocket maximum” and “deductible”
What you’ll find in the Summary of Benefits and Coverage
Your Summary of Benefits and Coverage should contain information about the covered benefits for each plan, cost-sharing (what you’ll be paying for out-of-pocket), and details on specific exclusions on each plan’s coverage.
Your Summary of Benefits and Coverage should also include an outline of the key features of the plan you are considering. You can review Summary of Benefits and Coverage forms for the different plans you’re considering to easily compare what each plan offers. Small business owners seeking out coverage for their company will find this summary:
- Included with plan information when shopping for their plans
- When enrolling in a plan
- At the start of every new plan year
- Anytime they request it
As an individual seeking out small business insurance, these tools will be especially helpful, since you may want to offer more than one plan option to employees who all have their own personal coverage needs. Knowing what every plan pays for covered medical services will allow you to make smart choices with your small business insurance, and chose affordable, comprehensive plans that apply to a diversity of employees.
Glossary of health insurance terms
The Summary of Benefits and Coverage should provide you with a glossary of insurance terms, which will help clear up any confusion about words and phrases you’re unfamiliar with. This tool makes shopping for insurance much easier, as it will lessen the amount of time spent trying to understand the details of plans you’re considering for your employees.
eHealth also has an extensive glossary of insurance terms that you’ll find to be essential when shopping for plans for your small business.
If you’re not entirely sure what an “out-pocket maximum” or a “deductible” means, you can easily access a brief, easy-to-understand definition of these terms. By knowing what these insurance terms mean, in addition to understanding the key features of every plan you’re considering, you might find that choosing affordable, comprehensive plans for your employees becomes much simpler. If there is any difference in definitions, you should always use the official definitions provided by the insurance company for a plan when evaluating that plan.
What the Summary of Benefits and Coverage can do for your small business
The required Summary of Benefits and Coverage replaces smoke and mirrors with transparency. The opportunity to see what is covered, where your costs are, and what benefits are offered gives you another tool to pick the most ideal plans to offer your employees.