We wanted to share some GREAT insight from Katie Selz, Employee Benefits Client Executive for AVID Risk Solutions.
One of the most common questions I get in my position as Client Executive for Employee Benefits is, ‘what can we expect in the future when it comes to healthcare?’ My response, ‘I wish my crystal ball gave me a clear answer to what the future will bring.’ Rather than wishing I was Madame Katie and could predict the future, I like to guide and direct my clients to make sure they are prepared for changes in the future. We need to focus on what’s most important, the now.
Employers must comply with numerous reporting and disclosure requirements throughout the year. It is important to understand which requirements are applicable for your size group. As well as being cognitive of your deadlines for notices and reporting. Staying on top of this information can avoid penalties issued by the Department of Labor.
Each year at renewal, groups are issued a price change. This price adjustment might also come with a plan design change. Most commonly we see an increase in premium amounts but there are rare occasions the rate change is a decrease. It is important to know where the change is coming from no matter the direction. There are many factors to these changes including baseline which calculates utilization and medical cost in the area. Other factors are Affordable Care Act fees and membership changes. These are just a few factors that contribute to the renewal adjustments. It is important for you to know and understand where the breakdown of the renewal is coming from in order to evaluate plan options and adjustments for the upcoming year.
Over the past few years I have handled many situations of groups transitioning from less than 50 FTE’s (full time equivalent employees) to over 50 FTE’s. As employers prepare for this transition they need to be made aware of compliance changes. It is imperative that coverage offered is affordable and reported to the IRS at the end of the year. Again, being informed and staying on top of this information can avoid penalties issued by the Department of Labor.
It is crucial to make sure you are working with a partner that is keeping you up to date on important compliance information. The right partnership can also help you be creative and be competitive in attracting and retaining employees. If you are looking for more information, please feel free to contact me at Katie.Selz@avidrisk.com or 608-827-4525.