Open Enrollment: 6 Steps to Success for Your Clients
Open enrollment ends February 15, 2015 for a March 1, 2015 effective date. To guide your clients to plans that fit their budgets and lifestyles, IHC Specialty Benefits, dba Health eDeals Insurance Solutions’ Vice President John Carlson recommends keeping this 6-step Open Enrollment Checklist at your side.
- Identify what plans are available to clients based on county or zip code. Not all companies are offering coverage in all counties in every state, Carlson explains.
- Identify what plans are the best choice, based on provider participation and premium. If it is key that your client’s current clinic is participating in a particular plan, he adds, ensure you select a plan that includes it.
- Know the specific regional deadline time.
- 11:59 p.m. Eastern
- 10:59 p.m. Central
- 9:59 p.m. Mountain
- 8:59 p.m. Pacific
- Know client’s 2014 income to determine subsidy eligibility. “The 2015 subsidy, if available, is going to be contingent upon 2014 income,” Carlson states. “If they haven’t completed their 2014 income taxes, they should at least know what their income was.” (Our Health Care Reform Calculator can help you determine if they are subsidy-eligible.)
- Be aware that the deadline for any plan changes is also February 15, even if your clients are already enrolled in a plan. “People really should re-evaluate what plans and costs are available in their area on a year-to-year-basis,” says Carlson. “People can move from one plan to another, without insurability; they don’t have to qualify for coverage. But they need to make those changes by February as well.”
- Ensure your clients have the coverage they need. “Be sure and ask: ‘Do you need dental coverage? Would you like a plan that can provide supplemental benefits that might help them meet your deductible, like our Metal Gap plan?’” Carlson suggests. And as you assist your client to round out their benefits, you’ll increase your compensation too.
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