Health insurance agents can provide you with several benefits as you search for the best policy for your business and its employees. But, did you know that working with an agent also offers many benefits even after you purchase a policy?
That’s right - health insurance agencies or brokers will continue to work with you and advocate for you even after your policy is purchased and coverage has begun.
That should provide you with peace of mind, considering in one survey, business owners ranked healthcare costs the No. 1 concern for their small business. Just because you have a policy in place, doesn’t mean you won’t worry about maintaining that policy and getting the best coverage for what you spend. Developing an ongoing relationship with your agent can help alleviate some of these worries.
Below are some of the benefits you and your business will experience working with a health insurance agency, even after you sign the dotted line on a policy agreement.
An agent will ...
Keep You Apprised Of Law Changes
Healthcare laws may change from year to year, and especially for businesses with employees, it’s important to keep up to date on any changes that may impact you.
Agents will keep you apprised of any regulations that pertain to you so that you can make sure you are in compliance with any state and federal healthcare laws.
Assist You With Employee Changes
It’s likely you’ll lose an employee, bring on a new employee, or both at some point this year.
An agent will assist you with any changes to your business, including signing up new employees for coverage.
Different healthcare plans and costs also may be available to you, depending on the number of employees you have. So if your staff levels change during the course of the year, an agent can keep you in the loop of any new features or costs you should be aware of.
Advocate For You
Even after enrollment, they continue to advocate for you. When you have questions about benefits or how a claim is processed, a licensed agent can walk you through the steps and advocate for you with the insurance company.
Help You Renew Your Policy
When it comes time to renew your policy, an agent will help with you with process, while addressing any new needs that must be met in your renewed policy. Or, if you want to shop for new policies, a health insurance agent can help you find the best prices and coverage.
Just like when you first signed up for a policy, a health insurance agent will provide the same benefits again, including using their network to find you the best options that meet your needs.
The best brokers work with multiple health insurance carriers, which means your broker will sort through several options to assess which group health insurance plans meet the current needs and wants of your employees.
Protect You With Their License
Licensed insurance agents must act in your best interest, whether that’s before you’ve purchased a policy or after. As a small business owner, you benefit from the protection that a licensed professional offers.
Throughout their service to you, licensed insurance agents must:
- Meet regulatory requirements
- Behave ethically
- Make certain disclosures to policyholders
- Follow any additional state regulations
Agents also continue their education through ongoing, specially-designed courses. Most states require agents to complete a certain number of hours of pre-licensing education. In California, for example, an agent must fulfill continuing education requirements to have their licenses renewed.
Provide These Services To You At No Charge
In California, the law states that health insurance brokers cannot charge a fee for their services to consumers. That means, working with a broker to secure a health insurance policy for your employees can provide several advantages - at no additional cost.
The law varies from state to state, but in California, health insurance companies pay brokers a commission for signing up new policy holders. When a business owner signs the broker of record letter, the broker then receives any commission on the policy.
It’s in the best interest of your broker to then ensure you are happy as a client throughout the duration of the policy, since many health insurance companies will compensate a broker for long-standing relationships.
Even after a health insurance policy is in place, the broker or agent’s ongoing relationship with a business owner continues to be important. That’s because as a company evolves, insurance needs may change as well.
You’ll want an agent on your side as you navigate any questions you have about using your policy, to advocate for you with the insurance company and to help you sign up new employees who come on board.
A licensed health insurance agent can be an invaluable resource and trusted adviser, representing you and assessing your needs over time - even after a policy is already in place.
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