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As a small business, you already have a lot on your plate. You have to worry about making an impact in a competitive market, reaching new customers, and making your employees happy. If you add in health insurance, things just get a lot more complicated.
Unfortunately, the costs of healthcare are only rising. Because of this, more small businesses are looking for ways to offer health insurance that don’t break the bank. Luckily, it’s easier than you think. From supplemental health insurance to the SHOP program, there are more ways than ever to offer employees the health insurance they deserve. Here are the top 4 small business health insurance options in 2019.
First, the biggest misconception about health insurance is that group insurance is only for big businesses. In order to find an affordable group plan, you need to have hundreds of employees. This line of thinking is wrong. In fact, many small businesses qualify for group plans.
It mostly comes down to how your state classifies “group” insurance. In some states, one worker (the owner) counts as a group. In other states, there need to be at least two workers (the owner and one employee). Group health insurance is a familiar option that most employees are already comfortable with, so it’s usually the easiest choice.
However, don’t jump the gun right away and opt for a group plan. Sometimes this is the most expensive option. Small businesses notoriously pay more in annual premiums for group health insurance, not to mention there are more expensive admin fees.
You might have heard the term HRA thrown around in the insurance world before. It sounds confusing, but it’s simpler than you think. A Health Reimbursement Arrangement or HRA is when companies give employees a tax-free allowance on a monthly basis. This allowance can be used for healthcare, whether the employee purchases their own insurance policy or pays out-of-pocket for services.
One of the most popular types of HRA is known as the Qualified Small Employer HRA (QSEHRA). This has tax benefits, and it’s available to any business with up to 49 employees. In order to qualify for this tax benefit, there needs to be some minimum essential coverage offered.
Another common option is for small business owners to find a plan through the Small Business Health Options Program exchange. These plans are not individual insurance plans, and they’re designed for businesses with 1-50 employees.
These plans are organized with tier-levels depending on the cost-sharing rates and benefits. Using this program introduces businesses to the SHOP tax credits which can offset the costs of providing insurance. These programs are also much more affordable than many private group plans or other options.
Finally, don’t forget about supplemental insurance. Supplemental insurance covers the gaps in traditional insurance coverage, and it’s a great way to ensure your employees have access to greater levels of care. Common supplemental insurance plans include vision, dental, hearing, and more. The best part about these plans is that they’re incredibly affordable compared to traditional insurance. They’re low-cost but high value.
You can purchase supplemental plans through your insurance provider or the SHOP marketplace. Learn about supplemental health insurance before making your final decision. Healthy employees are happy employees, so don’t leave any coverage gaps that they’ll need to fill on their own.
As a small business owner, you can’t afford not to offer health insurance. While many owners believe the opposite, it’s simply not acceptable to leave your employees scrambling to make ends meet for their own healthcare. It’s no secret that healthcare is costly in the United States. Anything you can do to make this more achievable financially for your employees, you should.
As you can see from the selection above, there are affordable insurance options designed with small businesses in mind. From tax benefits to supplemental plans, you have options. Start your search for the right small business health insurance today.