Should You Be Excited that It’s Time for Open Enrollment?

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The short answer is YES, you should! If you just really enjoy long answers, if you have questions about exactly what “Open Enrollment” is or if you’re wondering why it affects you, then read on. Technically speaking, “open enrollment” in terms of today’s insurance industry refers to a time period each year when you can sign up for health insurance. They are officially “open” for enrollment during this designated time period. Those who want insurance, but don’t sign up during the open enrollment period, probably can’t sign up for health insurance until the next (annual) open enrollment period.

THE IMPORTANT FACTS: Open enrollment for 2017 is here! This is the time you can enroll in – or make a change to – your health coverage. Enroll by December 15, 2016, if you want new coverage to start January 1, 2017.

Individuals, families and small businesses may apply for coverage through the new health insurance marketplaces during open enrollment.

Individuals and Families: Enrollment Period, Enrollment Dates, and Effective Dates of Coverage

The annual enrollment period for individuals and families is November 1st through January 31st.

Individuals and families who enroll on or before December 17th will have coverage effective January 1st.

Individuals and families who enroll on or before January 31st will have coverage effective February 1st.

Small businesses: Small Business Health Options (SHOP)

SHOP is a new approach to offering health coverage that puts businesses in control of their own health insurance budget. At the same time, it allows employees to choose from a number of affordable, quality health plans from private insurance companies including Health Net.

Through Small Business Health Options (SHOP), businesses can also be eligible for tax credits that can be an effective offset to the cost of providing health insurance to employees. Once enrolled, the group’s coverage and premiums are “locked” in for a year. For 12 months, they will not change.

If you still have questions about open enrollment or if you need assistance getting enrolled before you miss your window, get in touch with your full service brokerage and health insurance specialists at DeWitt Risk Management Consultants, LLC today. As a 2017 Elite Agent with Health Net we can help you figure out exactly what you need and get it done as quickly as possible. Because you shouldn’t have to stress about it for even one more hour, much less one more day!

For more information about Health Net open enrollment or any other health insurance or life insurance needs, contact everybody’s favorite full service broker and health insurance specialist at DeWitt Risk Management Consultants, LLC.

 

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What is a Broker and Do You Need One?

ImageA broker is a licensed agent authorized to do business by the respective State Department of Insurance. Brokers (in comparison to “agents”) work for the client. They sell and represent various insurance products and solutions. Brokers are a vital work force since most insurance companies can not “sell” directly to the public.

A Broker is licensed with many insurance companies but is independent in that they are not agents of the insurance companies. They do not represent one insurance company or another. They are trained and knowledgeable regarding all the insurance options in order to guide individuals and groups toward the insurance solutions/packages that will best suit their needs. 

Many wonder if utilizing the expertise of a broker will result in a higher cost for their insurance coverage. This is why we find it important to discuss broker compensation. The most common form of broker compensation is premium commission. Although the broker works for you, the insurance companies pay the broker commission. It is important to note, premiums charged to the employer are the same with or without a Broker. Contracting with a Broker provides you with an additional “arm” of service in addition to any service the insurance companies provide. 

Broker Contracting depends upon A Broker of Record (BOR) letter from the client. It authorizes the broker to work on the behalf of the client for all insurance matters. Brokers can be appointed for one or all contracts. The Broker of Record appointment remains in place until rescinded by the client in writing. The BOR is completely revocable by the client at any time for any reason.

First Thing’s First: The Mission Statement

At DeWitt Risk Management Consultants LLC we are dedicated to providing quality, helpful service to every client by developing close working relationships that enable us to create individualized solutions that meet specific insurance needs.

DeWitt Risk Management Consultants work for you. We are your offsite Human Resources Department and we provide as much hands on involvement as necessary. We do the research and due diligence so you don’t have to be a benefits expert. Our role is to provide the level of service you expect and deserve.