Unless you are a small business owner with less than 50 employees, you are probably mandated to provide health insurance. Even though health insurance is often expensive and complicated, small business health insurance is essential for expanding a company. Offering this type of health insurance can result in happy and healthy employees who are willing to stay with your company for many years. When searching for the best health insurance to offer your employees, it’s extremely easy to feel confused and overwhelmed. Where do you even start your search? Here is a comprehensive guide that will tell you everything you need to know about small business health insurance. 

Check Out the SHOP Marketplace 

If you are a small business your company may be eligible for insurance through the Small Business Health Options Program or SHOP marketplace. Recognized as a public state or federal-run exchange, this marketplace offers your employees the opportunity to select whichever plan works for them based on the category of plans that you have selected. In order to ensure that the insurance is affordable for your employees, the SHOP marketplace may even offer your company a substantial tax credit to significantly reduce the cost of premiums. The tax credit is only available if adhere to certain requirements such as offering insurance benefits and meeting employee income qualifications. In order to streamline the process, brokers who are registered with the marketplace can help your employees answer any questions and select the best plan for their unique situation. 

Work with a Private Health Exchange 

Often referred to as purchasing alliance, a private health exchange is another small business health insurance option. After deciding on a set contribution that you want to give your employees, they can then choose a plan from the private health exchange that adheres to the percentage of medical costs that you want to cover. Contrary to the SHOP marketplace, your small business won’t receive tax credits or a big selection of plans from which to choose. On the hand, plans from a private exchange can be high-quality and competitively priced. In addition, most private exchanges let your employees spend pretax dollars to save even more money. 

Purchase a Private Small Group Plan

If you have the time and energy, consider purchasing a private small group plan directly from a provider after performing much research. There’s a good chance that this option may save you money, but it could also result in lots of wasted time and money if you pick the wrong plan because of confusing terminology or a limited selection of plans. When searching for a great private small group plan on your own, make sure that you completely understand the insurance industry so that your employees will have quality and affordable health insurance. 

Pursue Individual Health Insurance 

Encouraging employees to pursue individual health insurance through the public marketplace or through a broker is simple yet effective approach. If you are a small business owner who would like to contribute to your workers’ health insurance, you can accomplish this goal through the health reimbursement arrangement or HRA. When you contribute money to this benefit plan, your employees will be reimbursed for out-of-pocket healthcare expenses and individual health insurance premiums. As a small business owner, you can contribute any amount to the HRA up to federally defined limits. A high-qualified broker can help employees setup the HRA through an online software provider and choose an individual health insurance plan based on their unique needs and budget. 

After reading this comprehensive guide to small groups health insurance, you should definitely have a better understanding of your options. The right plan for your company will depend on many factors such as your budget, company size, and employee needs. 
Navigating the many different small business health insurance options can be really tricky, but consider performing research right away to ensure that your employees will receive the best plan possible. The extremely experienced and highly qualified agents at Thomas & Associates are happy to review your existing coverages in order to help you select great health insurance for your small business today. Call 1-904-730-3900 as soon as possible to learn how we can help you with your small business health insurance needs.