If you’re thinking about offering a health insurance plan to your employees, this checklist will help guide you to a good decision. If you already offer health insurance and have received notice your plan is up for renewal, this checklist may help you decide whether to change or renew your plan.
Get ready to enroll
- Gather employee information. Include the number of employees eligible for the health plan, their gender and dates of birth. Include this information about dependents if you plan to offer dependent coverage.
- Draft a budget. Calculate what you are willing to spend and how much you expect employees to contribute toward premiums (cost-sharing).
- Compare plan rates and benefit options available through the New Mexico beWellnm for Small Business. As a general rule, plans with lower premiums (bronze and silver levels) have higher employee out-of-pocket costs. Plans with higher premiums (gold and platinum levels) generally have lower out-of-pocket costs. Rather than simply choose the plan with the lowest premium, consider the coverage levels against the needs of your business and its employees.
- Consider the cost of not offering coverage. Small employers who decide not to offer coverage should communicate with their employees about options for purchasing individual insurance through New Mexico’s Health Insurance Exchange. Some employers choose to increase wages to help cover the cost of individual health premiums. Employers with 50+ employees may also direct employees to beWellnm for individual coverage, but should weigh the cost of potential penalties against the cost of providing health insurance.
- Determine eligibility for tax credits. Businesses with fewer than 25 employees may be eligible for a tax credit for a portion of premiums paid for employee coverage. Learn more about small business premium tax credits. Use the tax credit calculator at HealthCare.gov to estimate your credit.
- Contact a broker or agent. You can enroll in a plan on your own. However, a broker or agent can help you determine the health plan best suited to the needs of your organization and your employees.
- Select your plan and enroll. Note that beWellnm for Small Business enrollment is available throughout the year. If your beWellnm for Small Business plan is up for renewal, you will be notified 75 days before your coverage expires.
- Communicate with employees. Explain eligibility, costs, coverage and effective dates for the health plan. Note: If you offer insurance you must offer it to all eligible employees within 90 days of their start date.