Steps to check if your medical and employee benefit broker has an insurance license

  Below I will describe how to check if your insurance broker is licensed in CA. In every state the process is very similar. As a consumer it is not your responsibility to check the creditability of your insurance broker, however I would urge you do so that you do not end up with the wrong insurance policy in the future. Step One: For CA employers, search by license number. If you would prefer you can search by the insurance broker’s name. Step two: Once you find your insurance broker’s name it is important that you verify that their license is “Active.” If their license is “Active” at least you know that your broker is current with the state continuing education and should be familiar with all of the products they are recommending. Tip: If the insurance company that your broker is recommending is not on the list of “Insurance Company Appointments” then it is likely your broker is selling you an insurance policy for that company for the first time. However, if your insurance broker works for an insurance agency then it is likely that the insurance policy will be placed under the managing broker. If you ever want to confirm who your broker is on your insurance policy, call the broker and ask to see the Master Application for any group insurance benefits (medical, dental, vision, life and disability insurance). For individual insurance plans many times there is a broker attestation or broker details section that clearly identifies who was the writing broker or broker of record for your insurance policy. If you are ever unsatisfied with your current insurance broker and...

Alternatives to Zenefits

  As many small businesses in CA and across the country look for alternate options to Zenefits it will be important to consider the benefits of the various benefit enrollment systems and brokerages available in the marketplace. There are over two hundred benefit enrollment systems available. How does an employer go through making the right decision as they consider alternate options?   Personal customer service should be number one. As many employers know, keeping employees happy is the key to company success. As HR professionals it is pertinent that you align yourself with an insurance brokerage that understands your immediate needs and is able to consistently deliver on what is most important to your company culture. Free does not translate to significant value. As an insurance broker in CA all small group medical and vision insurance rates are the same. However, dental, life and disability insurance rates are not. It is important you have a broker on your side that is getting customized quotes for you vs just selling you book rates. As you may know, all of the dental rates Zenefits is selling on their website at first glance are book rates. Those rates are about 15-25% more than the rest of the marketplace. Technology should support customer relationships, not define them. When you have a personal relationship with a broker the communication of policy information and support reaches new levels. When you have an insurance business that operates from off-site call centers, staffed by employees with no familiarity of the local insurance community it is almost impossible to bring the level of customer service to superior level....

Grandmothering Rules for Anthem Blue Cross of CA

The ABC’s of Grandmothing Groups qualifying – Groups with an anniversary date in the 4th Quarter may participate in the opportunity to Grandmother their Legacy plan; 2014 October, November, December anniversary dates ONLY. Renewals – 4th Quarter renewals will be specific to the group’s current Legacy plan only. Automatic – 4th Quarter Groups will AUTOMATICALY stay on their LEGACY plan. If a group wants to move to an ACA plan, they must fill out and submit the ACA Opt-In form (attached) by the 10th of the month before the renewal date. For example, if a group has an October 1st renewal date and is interested in moving to ACA plans the Opt-in form must be to Bedrosian & Associates by 9/10/14. No exceptions 411 – It is VERY important to remember that no exceptions will be made for: pre-4th Quarter Groups to participate, Opt-In Due Dates missed, or for groups that Opt-In to an ACA plan then decide they want out. Important Dates: July 18 – October Legacy renewals will be released (eRenewal & GA CD’s) July 18 – October ACA renewal will be posted. July 21st – October Legacy renewals mailed to Bedrosian & Associates July 24th – October Legacy renewals mailed the company. Other important information: Movement – The group will have the option of only the plans currently available to their group; members will be able to move into different plans currently available to the group. OPT-IN Rules– Groups wanting to move from a Legacy plan to an ACA plan MUST Opt-In to do so. The Opt-In form must be received by Anthem no later than the 10th...

SeeChange Health Insurance Grandmothering Rules

As you no doubt are aware, the Governor signed into law Senate Bill 1446, sometimes called the “Grandmothering” Bill. This legislation allows some small groups to keep their current health insurance coverage when they renew in 2014 even if their current coverage does not meet certain requirements of the Affordable Care Act. To simplify: clients get to keep their 2013 plans for another year. Many clients would like to take advantage of this opportunity. SeeChange is pleased to inform you they can. SeeChange Health Insurance will automatically renew small groups with anniversary dates of October, November or December 2014 into their current 2013 plans unless they notify SeeChange they prefer to move to one of our ACA-compliant plans. Some things to note: 2013 underwriting rules apply. This means, for example, groups may downgrade their coverage with a simple request, but upgrades are subject to underwriting approval. Also, some groups may receive a new RAF. SeeChange is filing rates for these plans now. Due to SeeChange wanting to extend the option to stay with their current plan to groups renewing in October SeeChange is redoing the renewal packages for these groups. In June, SeeChange impacted groups received notice that we were withdrawing our 2013 plans. While our 2013 plans remain unavailable for new sales, they will remain available to clients renewing October, November or December 2014. If Bedrosian & Associates can be of any assistance to review your SeeChange or any other medical insurance policy please do not hesitate to contact...

Blue Shield System Enhancements for Small Groups in CA

As part of Blue Shield’s commitment to improve the way they provide service to you, they are continuing to bring more customers onto our enhanced membership and claims system. Once the new system has been fully implemented, Blue Shield customers will be able to process and pay claims and enroll members faster and with greater efficiency. On June 1, Blue Shield is moving their small business clients with a July, August, and September 2014 renewal period onto the system. As of June 1, 2014, your clients will notice some changes. Changes for employers: Consolidated medical, dental, and vision* coverage billing with an improved format and a tear-off remittance slip. Customers will no longer receive separate bills for Dental HMO and/or vision* coverage they obtain through Blue Shield. New account number for billing purposes. New group contract number that replaces your current number. New subgroup billing number(s) that replaces your existing billing unit number(s). New employer service contact number. New payment mailing address. Access to our enhanced Employer Connection Plus online system for account management. Delayed June 2014 client bills. Please note: June 2014 Blue Shield bills will be mailed the last week of May, and they should receive them the first week in June. Our standard 30-day grace period for payment will extend from the date we actually produce their June bills. Clients’ June bill will be the first one generated by our newly enhanced system. The June bill will not reflect outstanding balances or adjustments from May, so please have them pay their May bill as usual. Our Producer Services team will work with you to resolve any open balances. For...