Employee Benefits Report -January 2018

Pharmacogenomics: Better Health and Cost Savings

association health plans
Drugs are formulated for normal physiology. Physicians with knowledge of a person’s unique genetic makeup can better determine which drugs will be most effective. Read on for details.

Short- or Long-Term? Which Disability Policy is Best for Your Employees?

2Long-term disability coverage offers employees better financial security. Yet most workers choose short-term coverage
Read on for details.

The Benefits of Offering Supplemental Life Insurance

3Supplemental insurance allows employees to customize their coverage to meet their individual needs. Read on for details.

Voluntary Benefits Now Almost Mandatory

>More employers are turning to voluntary benefits as a cost-effective way to help employees protect their financial assets. Employees, too, are looking for more robust benefit packages.

Read on for details.

Employee Benefits Report -December 2017

Changes to 401(k) Plans Under Consideration

association health plans
Congress is debating possible changes to the 401(k) retirement plans employers offer their employees. Some of the ideas being discussed by Senators and Representatives would favor employees, some would benefit the federal government. Read on for details.

Vision Insurance Trends to Incorporate in Your Benefit Plans

2Employees increasingly rank vision insurance as one of the most important benefits. Here’s how to get the right plan for your employees:
Read on for details.

Proposed Changes to Group Health Insurance for Small Employers

3The president and congress continue proposing changes to healthcare laws and the country continues to debate what the effects of those proposals will be. Read on for details.

Getting the Most Out of Disability Benefits

You spend valuable time and money to offering benefits to your employees. So imagine how frustrating it would be for you and your employees if they were unable to enjoy the benefits they deserve.

Read on for details.

Employee Benefits Report -November 2017

Your EEOC Responsibilities as an Employer

association health plansEmployers have a responsibility to protect the rights of employees suffering from a mental health condition. Read on for details.

What to Look for Before Signing a Group Health Plan Contract

2To get the best benefit plan it’s important to know your options
Read on for details.

What Type of Group Health Plan is Right for Your Company?

3These days there are a lot of group health plans to choose from. To pick the right one for your employees it’s important to know the advantages and disadvantages of each. Read on for details.

Why You Should Consider Re-Enrolling Your Employees in Their 401(k)

Once you establish a 401(k) retirement plan for your employees, you might think your work is done. However, despite your retirement plan carrier’s best efforts to educate employees on how to make good investment decisions, many employees do not have appropriately diversified portfolios.

Read on for details.

Employee Benefits Report – October 2017

The What, Who and How Much of Offering Life Insurance

association health plans
As an employer you are in a unique position to offer your employees an easy way to purchase a valuable benefit, costing them less than if they purchased it on their own. Read on for details.

Strategies for Making Your Wellness Program Pay Off

2Wellness programs are promoted as win-win. Employers save money on health care benefit costs. Employees improve their health.
Read on for details.

New Ways to Keep Health Care Benefit Costs Down

3After salaries, Health care benefits are an employer’s largest employee-related expense, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. A 2016 survey by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) pegged the annual cost in 2016 at $8,669 for each employee. Read on for details.

Group Health Costs Continue to Climb

It could cost you five percent or more to provide your employees with health care benefits in 2018.
After surveying large employers, the National Business Group on Health released a report on plan design costs this summer.

Read on for details.

Employee Benefits Report – September 2017

Could Direct Primary Care Control Your Health Care Benefit Costs?

association health plans
Affordable Care Act marketplaces are closing at an alarming rate. Health care benefit costs are soaring. Some Republicans are trying to repeal and replace the current Affordable Care Act and others in Congress just want to make changes before it implodes. Meanwhile, coverage isn’t getting any cheaper, and many Americans are left wondering what options they have for affordable health care coverage. Read on for details.

Opioid Addiction in the Workplace: How to Help Employees

2Opioid addiction is on the rise and is affecting the workplace. The National Safety Council reported that nearly 70 percent of the employers they surveyed said prescription drug abuse has negatively impacted their companies.
Read on for details.

Switching to a High-Deductible Health Plan? Here’s How to Explain the Change

3High-deductible health plans (HDHPs) are gaining in popularity as a way for employers to save money and to give employees more say on how their health care dollars are spent. Read on for details.

Great Reasons to Offer a 529 Savings Plan

A 529 college savings plan is considered one of the best ways for parents to save for their children’s’ higher education. Similar to a 401(k) savings plan or an Individual Retirement Account, contributions to the state-run plan grow tax free. In many states, participants get a tax deduction or credit for their contributions.
Read on for details.

Employee Benefits Report – August 2017

HRA Changes That Affect Your Employees

association health plans
A new law, along with rules governing Health Reimbursement Arrangements (HRA) affects the type of health care benefits you can offer your employees. Read on for details.

Four Questions to Ask Before Purchasing Dental Insurance for your Employees

2If you’re a small employer with 50 or fewer employees, you might be wondering what benefits you need to provide to attract and keep valuable talent. You want to offer attractive benefits on a cost-effective, sustainable basis for yourself, your family and your employees. Health care benefits are expected and often mandatory, but are dental benefits worthwhile?
Read on for details.

Ways to Help Your Employees Have a More Secure Retirement

3Have your employees saved enough for retirement? The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) says an individual could easily spend 30 years or more in retirement, and to retire comfortably could need up to 80 percent of their annual income. Read on for details.

GOP Proposal to Tax Employer Health Plans – Pros and Cons

Estimates show that almost half of American private sector employers offer health care insurance to their employees. The Kaiser Family Foundation says the percentage ranges from a low of 34 percent in Idaho to a high of 70 percent in the District of Columbia. The practice is popular because the benefits are exempt from federal, state and city taxes and employers can deduct 100 percent of the costs.
Read on for details.

Employee Benefits Report – July 2017

The American Health Care Act: A Bill in Transition

association health plans
Wondering how the changes to the Affordable Care Act (ACA) will affect you? You’ll have to be patient. The American Health Care Act (AHCA) bill is still in flux. Possible enhancements or repercussions are only educated guesses at this time. Read on for details.

Voluntary Benefits: The Upside of Giving Employees a Choice

2Many employers rely on a robust benefit package to attract and retain employees. The challenge is determining which benefits will appeal to a diverse employee base.
Read on for details.

It’s the Law: Benefits You Must Provide Employees

3Employers have a lot of options for increasing the appeal of their benefits plans. But there are also certain minimums to comply with — benefits required by law. Read on for details.

Want an Edge Attracting and Keeping Millennials? Consider Offering Pet Insurance

The Nationwide insurance company estimates that 65 percent of Americans own at least one pet. Of those pet owners, the American Pet Products Association estimates 24 percent are millennials.
Read on for details.

Employee Benefits Report – June 2017

How Employers Can Curb a ‘Hidden Workplace Epidemic,’ Save Money and Boost Productivity

association health plans
Every day, 60 people die from opioid pain medications in America. That’s 22,000 people every year. Opioids are being overprescribed and they’re now the #1 cause of unintentional death in the United States. Not surprisingly, this “hidden epidemic” is impacting businesses. The National Safety Council has recommendations on what employers need to do. Read on for details.

Bill Would ‘Alter the Legal Landscape’ for Workplace Wellness Programs

2A bill that members of Congress are considering would substantially change federal rules governing workplace wellness programs, lifting limits on the inducements that can be used to persuade workers to provide personal health information, according to a brief by the Kaiser Family Foundation.
Read on for details.

Retirement Policy Likely to Change Radically in Near Future

3As President Trump and the new Republican-controlled Congress settle in, experts say U.S. retirement policies are likely to change significantly over the next few years. Read on for details.

Benefits Paid to Long-Term Care Policyholders Rise 6 Percent

America’s long-term care insurance companies paid $8.65 billion in benefits to 280,000 people in 2016, an increase of 6 percent over the prior year, according to the American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance.
Read on for details.

Employee Benefits Report – May 2017

Big Data and Technical Advances Are Helping Employers Reduce Health Insurance Costs

association health plans
At a time when the annual price tag for health insurance is topping $10,000 per employee, cognitive health systems, telemedicine or telehealth and other medical advances are helping to lower costs. Read on for details.

How to Control Rising Drug Costs

2Spending on prescription drugs in the United States accounted for nearly 17 percent of total healthcare spending — with a price tag of $457 billion in 2015. And that’s only going up, unless serious change occurs.
Read on for details.

Many Americans ‘Not Worried Enough’ About Retirement

3More than half of working age Americans risk facing a lower standard of living during retirement, a new study by the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College found. Read on for details.

New Long-Term Care Insurance Policies Only Cost Seniors $100-$150 a Month

The cost of long-term care insurance continues to rise. A couple in their 60s purchasing new coverage could expect to pay 6-9 percent more compared to a year ago, according to the annual industry analysis of prices.
Read on for details.

Employee Benefits Report – April 2017

President Trump and House GOP Introduce Obamacare Replacement Plan

association health plans

Republicans Withdraw American Health Care Act

The American Health Care Act of 2017 was withdrawn by Republicans from the House on March 24, 2017 for lack of sufficient votes. However, even though the bill is moot at this point, the underlying issues, problems and possible solutions associated with the bill are still valid and significant, which is why we have left the following article as is and unedited. Read on for details.

Millennials Driving Growth of Health Savings Accounts

2As more employers offer high-deductible health plans amid rising healthcare costs, health savings accounts are becoming increasingly popular in the workplace — especially among millennials.
Read on for details.

Employees Overwhelmed by Complex Health Options

3As the healthcare market shifts toward individual responsibility, a survey found many workers are overwhelmed by the complexity of their healthcare options and many have a poor understanding of the benefits of health savings accounts. Read on for details.

Pension Plan Decline Prompts Interest in Annuities

While fewer employers are offering workers defined pension plans, a growing number of companies are taking a renewed interest in providing annuity income options to their employees, the Employee Benefit Research Institute found.
Read on for details.

Employee Benefits Report – March 2017

House Votes to Clear Way for Repeal of Obamacare

association health plansIn a 227-198 vote, the U.S. House of Representatives approved a resolution in January that paves the way for the repeal of the Affordable Care Act. President Trump and Republicans, who are working on a replacement plan, say Obamacare was a failure, but House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi argues it diminished the rate of growth in healthcare costs. Read on for details.

How Wellness Programs Improve the Bottom Line

2Workplace wellness programs reduce medical costs, absenteeism and health-related productivity losses, yet many employers find it difficult to measure the success of their programs.
Read on for details.

Trends in Workplace Benefits in 2017

3As more employers face increasing health insurance costs, many are looking at their total benefit package to find the best benefits to invest their dollars in. Read on for details.

Congress Reexamines Repeal of Cadillac Tax

Four members of Congress have reintroduced bipartisan legislation that would amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to repeal the excise tax on high-cost employer-sponsored health coverage.
Read on for details.

Employee Benefits Report – February 2017

Bosses’ Top Concern is the Employer Mandate

association health plansIt’s one of the top issues for employers this year. As President Donald Trump begins his term, an Aon survey found nearly half of employers view the employer mandate as the top healthcare concern of 2017. Read on for details.

3 Tips to Expand Voluntary Benefits and Save Money

2At a time when employers are trying to solve talent gaps while juggling tight budgets, the popularity of voluntary benefits continues to gain traction—with voluntary benefits’ sales increasing for the fifth straight year, according to LIMRA.
Read on for details.

Government Cracks Down on Parity of Coverage Violators

3Prior to leaving the White House, the Obama administration increased enforcement of laws requiring parity of coverage for mental health and substance abuse benefits. Read on for details.

Balances in Health Savings Accounts Grow by a Third

Balances in Health Savings Accounts grew by more than a third in 2015, according to a new report by the Employee Benefit Research Institute.
Read on for details.