Despite relentless criticism, the Obama administration continues to propose and create policies and programs relating to health insurance and retirement savings plans. For sure, much of the criticism is due to fear of change by an industry that is doing well for itself. If brokers are able to briefly contain their fear of the unknown, they will see that they have a lot to gain from the Administration’s many proposals.
There are three main themes to the White House’s health insurance and retirement plan proposals:
- Increase Access
- Increase Legal Protections
- Increase “Tax” Fairness
It’s a fact that more Americans have access to health insurance because of the Affordable Care Act (aka Obamacare). And while most everyone agrees that increasing access to health insurance is a good thing, Obamacare was a challenge for one group in particular—insurance brokers. After Obamacare, many insurance brokers expressed concern for their livelihood and if they could transition to a new, more drawn-out way of doing business. They also had legitimate concerns about their commissions. There is talk that some independent agents transitioned to other professions or retired, but for the most part insurance brokers did not lose their livelihood and now have a larger customer base to assist. Continue Reading...
Choosing a health plan is a difficult task for anyone, even employers. Their understanding of health insurance including how to choose the best plans at the best price is not as good as one might think. And like employees they find the process unpleasant and spend just hours each year discussing their options. However, employers are in the fortunate position of having one-on-one assistance from insurance company representatives. These reps help explain the latest trends in plan design and costs to employers. And if employers want even more help understanding or choosing health insurance coverage, they can get it from an independent health insurance broker.
Health insurance brokers serve as the middleman between insurance companies and purchasers of group or individual health insurance. Often called Producers, brokers enter into agreements with health insurance companies to sell the insurer's products to employers and individuals. And although they have agreements with the insurer, their client is the employer or individual.
The personalized attention brokers provide an employer is just the type of help employees want from their employers. Employee benefit pros can learn a few things from brokers to help make the health plan selection process easier for their employee clients. Continue Reading...