Keeping You Current
December 2015 Newsletter
Approximately 85% of all employee benefit plans now renew on December 1. Already a popular time of year for renewals, many companies moved to a December 1 renewal in order to postpone some of the ACA's provisions. The BDR team along with the insurance carriers are working diligently to process this enormous influx of benefit plan elections. We appreciate your patience with this process. Please reach out to us if you have questions.  

In the meantime, please keep current with this month's news.  
  1. Health Plan Costs Vary by Industry and Region
  2. Agencies Issue Final Rule on Grandfathered Health Plans
  3. Question of the Month
  4. Better Living: You Can Do It!
  5. BDR Office Holiday Hours
Survey: Health Plans Are Lowest for Retail, Construction and Hospitality Employees
Government employees' health coverage no longer most expensive 

Health plan costs vary significantly by industry and geography, the UBA 2015 health plan survey reveals. Retail, construction and hospitality employees cost the least to cover, while government (the historical cost leader) and finance (the new leader) employees cost the most. Plans in the Northeast cost the most, while costs in the Central U.S. are the lowest. Retail and construction employees pay the most toward their coverage, while government employees pay the least.

For more details on trends revealed by the survey, download a complimentary copy of the executive summary here. Contact your BDR account team to benchmark your plan against others in your region, industry or size bracket.   

Agencies Issue Final Rule on Grandfathered Health Plans and Other Initiatives  

In November, federal agencies issued a final rule that essentially combined a variety of interim final rules and non-regulatory guidance on a variety of Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) initiatives such as grandfathered health plans, preexisting condition exclusions, internal and external appeals, rescissions of coverage, lifetime and annual limits, emergency care access and dependent coverage. The final rule was very similar to the previous guidance it consolidated and goes into effect on January 1, 2017.

The final rule also noted that various transitional rules are now void, such as the allowance of grandfathered health plans to exclude children under age 26 who were eligible for other group health plan coverage, and rules that provided a special enrollment period for children under age 26 who had been excluded from coverage.

See this paper for details on all rules and guidance. 

Question of the Month

Q. If an employee chooses not to elect coverage for his or her spouse or dependents during open enrollment, would the spouse's or dependent's loss of coverage be a COBRA qualifying event?
A. No. An employee's decision to drop coverage is not a COBRA triggering event.
Better Living: You Can Do It!   

If you want to make a healthy lifestyle change that sticks, two things will help. First, set a realistic and achievable goal. Next, believe in yourself to reach that goal.

Start by creating a goal that is SMART.
What makes a goal SMART? Your goal should be:  
  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Achievable
  • Realistic
  • Timed

You'll also need to believe in yourself to reach your goal. Confidence is key when you're working toward a healthy living goal.

What can you do to encourage your employees to develop habits to maintain a positive outlook for better health?

Benefits Done Right will be closed
Thursday, December 24, 2015,
Friday, December 25, 2015 and
Friday, January 1, 2016

Wishing You Warmest
Season's Greetings

Benefits Done Right Insurance Agency, Inc.
601 University Avenue, Suite 250 / Sacramento, CA  95825
800-482-1817 / Fax: 916-564-9228

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