Category Archives: Benefits

Benefits

Rate Shock vs. Access Shock

Posted on by HPA

Yesterday, we wrote about the net decrease that’s expected in individual health insurance premiums next year. Part of the reason for the lower-than-expected rates, according to the Washington Examiner, is that “the new health insurance exchanges drove a hard bargain with medical providers, and thus many of those providers chose not to part... (read more)

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New Kaiser Health News Article on Short-Term Plans

Posted on by Eric Johnson

We’ve long said that for individuals and families that don’t sign up for coverage during open enrollment, short-term medical plans can be a great solution. In fact, they can even be a good option for healthy individuals who don’t qualify for a premium tax credit – while short-term plans are not considered qualified coverage, the cost o... (read more)

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Supreme Court sides with Hobby Lobby

Posted on by HPA

In what some are calling a “startling” ruling, the Supreme Court yesterday ruled 5-4 in favor of Hobby Lobby’s objection to the contraception mandate under the Affordable Care Act. The ruling, which recognizes the religious rights of “closely held” corporations, could have far-reaching impacts, possibly allowing thousands of companie... (read more)

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Amazon pays employees to quit

Posted on by HPA

A couple months ago, multiple news outlets ran a story about Amazon’s offer to pay employees up to $5,000 to quit their jobs. “I need a job like that” was probably your initial thought when you read the story, but you may have also thought about how some of your clients could benefit from adopting the same strategy. Amazon got the ide... (read more)

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IRS Kills Defined Contribution

Posted on by HPA

The IRS has issued a two-question Q&A that seems to kill any hope agents had that pre-tax employer contributions or reimbursements for individual health coverage – whether for exchange-based or non-exchange-based plans – would somehow be allowed under the Affordable Care Act. The recent guidance is really more of a clarification than ne... (read more)

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Health Insurance: A Matter of Life and Death

Posted on by HPA

Ok, that sounds pretty dramatic. Insurance is boring, right? Sure, we've gotten some attention recently because of the health reform legislation, but under normal circumstances insurance agents have to beg people to talk to them. That's because insurance isn't fun. It may be necessary, but it isn't fun. Doctors - now they have an exciting j... (read more)

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Dental Insurance: A Big Opportunity During the ACA Down-Time

Posted on by HPA

Now that the initial annual open enrollment period has come to a close, many agents are twiddling their thumbs and wondering what to do with their time until the Marketplace opens up again in mid-November. Here's an idea: sell other products! Yes, it's true that, aside from special enrollment opportunities that are created by life-chang... (read more)

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Health Reform Update: Products, Providers, Premiums, and Politics

Posted on by HPA

We thought we'd end the month with a quick update on some of the trends we're seeing as a result of the health reform legislation. Unfortunately, there really aren't any trends. Instead, we're continuing to see conflicting news stories in almost every area, so we'll tell you what's being reported and you can choose for yourself what to believe... (read more)

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HSA Limits for 2015

Posted on by HPA

The IRS has announced the new Health Savings Account limits for 2015. The minimum deductible will be $1,300 for single coverage and $2,600 for family coverage and the maximum out-of-pocket will be $6,450 for single coverage and $12,900 for family coverage. The contribution amounts are also increasing. The contribution limit for someone w... (read more)

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Dumb ACA Rules: Another One Bites the Dust

Posted on by HPA

Since the Affordable Care Act was signed into law, we’ve seen a number of provisions eliminated – rules and new programs that we knew all along simply wouldn’t work. Among these include the CLASS Act (the government-run long-term care insurance plan that was scheduled to go into effect in 2012), the 1099 provison (a requirement that empl... (read more)

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