Late spring and summer are among the most popular times for Illinois’ companies to renew their employee health insurance plans.  And as healthcare continues to evolve, with it comes no shortage of questions from those looking to get the most from their healthcare dollars.

Whether you’re hoping to reduce premiums, enhance coverage, or make the switch to a completely new plan, knowing the voiced concerns of others can help ensure that you don’t end up regretting your renewal for the next twelve months.

Let’s review some commonly asked questions about 2018 group health plan renewals for Illinois businesses, and some simple ways to lower your premiums without sacrificing coverage quality.

Have Other Companies Been Seeing Significant Premium Increases?

There have been some premium increases, but nothing too catastrophic as of right now.  It really depends on the structure of the group, and how much time your broker is putting into the back-end research and plan assessments.

Which Carriers is Best for Company of our Size, Location, Industry?

A surprising number of businesses do not realize that there are options outside BCBS, some of which end up being better suited for their needs; from a healthcare and financial view.  But again, each group is unique and there’s a wide spectrum of variables at play.  It’s strongly advised to sit down with your agent and have them explain, in detail, a multitude of options.

Why Would I Want To Go With a Group HRA Plan?

Health Reimbursement Accounts, or group HRA plans, offer quite a few benefits to both the staff and company management.  In addition to 100% tax deductible employer contributions, with an HRA you only pay for the benefits uses.  Companies with healthy staff, younger employees and countless others have seen significant savings from group HRAs. 

Are We Still Required to Follow Obamacare Regulations?

There are still some compliance issues in effect from the ACA and previous administration, but how it affects groups directly varies based on size, geographic location and other criteria.  Premier can help you make sure that you’re in full compliance if it’s a matter of concern.

What Is The 80/20 Employee Healthcare Rule?

Traditionally, 20 percent of a company’s employees will account for about 80 percent of its total healthcare expenses.  Yet another reason why so many businesses consider going with a self-funded group health plan.

Do We Have to Keep the Same Renewal Date?

No, but you will need to work with a broker who knows what they’re doing.  The last thing you want to do is end up with a massive gap on non-coverage for your entire staff, or flub the paperwork and inadvertently cancel your benefits.

My Company Grew Last Year, Does This Change Our Plan Options?

If your total number of full time employees now exceeds 20 employees, your options won’t be any more limited, just structured a bit differently.  Also, employees who leave the company will now be offered COBRA benefits as opposed to traditional Illinois Continuation benefits. 

What Other Services Do Group Health Insurance Agents Offer?

Well, we can’t speak for all agencies, but here at Premier we offer quite a few free HR services and complimentary perks to our group clients. These include ongoing benchmark assessments, free access to a library of legally-verified insurance forms, HR documents, promotional signage, employee booklets and more. 

Learn How to Get the Most from Your Group Health Renewal

If you’re an Illinois-based business and concerned about your current or upcoming employee health insurance renewal, PFI Chicago can help free of charge.  There are no fees for our consultations and we impart a strict no pressure working environment. 

Learn more right now, get answers or schedule a time to meet or talk with one of our staff agents, by calling Premier Financial Insurance in Lisle at 800-369-0287.  You can also write to us online through our agency's secure contact page.