Beginning Jan. 1, 2014, individuals and employees of small businesses will have access to insurance coverage through the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) health insurance exchanges (Exchanges). Open enrollment under the Exchanges will begin on Oct. 1, 2013.
The ACA requires employers subject to the Fair Labor Standards Act to provide all new hires and current employees with a written notice about ACA’s Exchanges by Oct. 1, 2013.
Opportunity for brokers
This looming deadline coupled with open enrollment offers brokers an opportunity to both help employers comply with the law and educate their employees. Employers have told brokers that it is very important that they provide these services.
Further, study after study released recently points to the fact that employers (and employees) feel vastly unprepared for the upcoming enrollment. For example, Aflac released a recent study in which 70% of workers said they had yet to hear communication from their employers on how PPACA impacted their health benefits – likely because most employers in the study were unprepared themselves to make the changes mandated by PPACA.
What does this mean to you? For one thing, it’s an indicator that your clients need you more than ever, and it’s also an opportunity for those brokers who will step up and become the health care reform resource that employers need right now.
Meet and exceed client expectations
So how to deliver? If you haven’t already, start by checking in with your clients to make sure they are prepared for enrollment and understand how PPACA and the new Exchanges will impact their benefits plan. Provide some resources for them to educate their employees as well.
If you have Broker Briefcase, I recommend that you try one or all of the following resources to meet and exceed your customer’s expectations. (If you don’t have Broker Briefcase, it’s a great companion for a broker in supporting client needs such as ACA. Learn more here.)
To educate employers and help keep them in compliance with the October 1st deadline:
- Health Care Reform: Health Insurance Exchanges
- Health Care Reform: Enrollment in Health Insurance Exchanges
- Health Care Reform: Exchange Health Insurance Subsidies
- Health Care Reform: DOL Issues Model Exchange Notice and Sets Compliance Deadline
- Health Care Reform: Model Exchange Notice for Employers that Do Not Offer Health Plans
- Health Care Reform: Model Exchange Notice for Employers that Offer Health Plans
To educate employees who may be confused about exchanges at the time of enrollment – see the following employee-facing Know Your Benefit flyers and posters:
- Health Care Reform: Exchange Notices
- Health Care Reform: Marketplace Health Plan Categories
- Health Care Reform: Employer Notice Requirements
- Health Care Reform: Health Insurance Marketplaces
- Health Care Reform: Health Insurance Marketplace FAQs
- Health Care Reform: Enrolling in Health Insurance Marketplaces
- Health Care Reform: Applying for Marketplace Subsidies and Reporting
- Health Care Reform: Marketplace Subsidies, Medicaid and CHIP
- Health Care Reform: FAQ: What If I Already Have Insurance?
- Health Care Reform: FAQ: Change to Other Health Care Programs
- Health Care Reform: FAQ: Getting Lower Costs on Coverage
- Health Care Reform: FAQ: Rights and Protections
- Exchanges and Enrollment Poster 1: Don’t Throw Your Money Away
- Exchanges and Enrollment Poster 2: Open Enrollment Starts Soon
- Exchanges and Enrollment Poster 3: Open Enrollment is Here
- Exchanges and Enrollment Poster 4: Open Enrollment is Ending
- Exchanges and Enrollment Poster 5: Open Enrollment is Over