For over 30 years, Rust Ewing Insurance has been an established employer resource and advisor for group insurance and employee benefits. We market and make recommendations on Medical, Dental, Life, Vision, 401K, Retirement, PEO plans, High Deductible Health Plans (HDHP), HSA, HRA, HR Consulting and Administration, Disability, Long Term Care, Medicare, and other related products and services. We are nationally recognized as experts in evaluating our client's true insurance needs, providing unique and innovative employee and individual solutions for all health lines of coverage.
Rust Ewing Insurance understands that every employer is different, and their needs reflect specific company goals and demands. For this reason, we offer specialized services for your company dictated by your needs. We also provide dedicated support for group meetings, enrollment periods, claims, billing and renewals.
Rust Ewing Insurance holds elite status through our affiliation with Benefits Concepts with all major carriers. We are able to offer in-house live underwriting with our carrier partner underwriting teams. Our company leadership sits on the advisory board of multiple carriers and is consistently active in the industry at the local, state and national level.
Why Employers Commit to Us:
- Quick response support allowing employees to focus on employer business
- Increased buying power by leveraging premiums with multi-million dollar company
- Increased bargaining strength with carriers
- Convenience in shopping multiple top-rated carrier services
- Assistance with selecting the most cost effective plans
- Our commitment to administer the same service and attention to groups ranging from 2 to 1000+ employees
- Specialty service vendors, including COBRA Compliance, Labor Attorneys, PEO and HR services
- Solid reputation and integrity for over 25 years
Rust Ewing Insurance offers a full-range of services that cater to individuals and companies of all sizes.
Our agency actively participates in the group and individual medical insurance marketplace. Whether you are investigating medical insurance for an individual or group plan, our agency is capable and prepared to support you. We can help you evaluate your needs, survey the marketplace, prepare side-by-side plan price comparisons for your review, and then assist you in implementing the plan[s] that best meet your objectives.
Health Savings Account (HSA)
Our agency can help you with Health Savings Accounts. HSA's gives you more control over your healthcare financing. Health Savings Accounts are combined with an HSA-compatible health plan to offer a more affordable approach to healthcare. The health plans typically provide lower premiums and the HSA provides tax benefits when contributions are made, as funds grow and when used to pay for qualified medical expenses. Lower insurance premiums combined with using tax-free money can lead to significant savings.
Health Reimbursement Accounts (HRA)
Rust Ewing Insurance provides our clients with Health Reimbursement Accounts. HRA's are employer-funded plans that reimburse employees for medical expenses that are not included in the company's standard insurance plan. Because the employer funds the plan, any distributions are considered tax deductible (to the employer). Reimbursement dollars collected by the employee are often tax free.
Our agency partners with many carriers within the dental insurance marketplace. Whether you are considering dental insurance for an individual, small business, or a large group quote, Rust Ewing Insurance is prepared to assist you. We can help you appraise your needs, evaluate the market, compare plans and prices for your review, and then help you execute the plan(s) that you determine most accurately meet your requirements.
Potentially high costs of regular eye examinations and prescription eyewear can be of real concern, especially for large businesses or families. Being able to cover a portion of these costs by looking into acquiring vision insurance for yourself or business is a great investment. Vision insurance is a wellness benefit designed to provide routine, preventive eye care such as eye exams, eyewear, and other services at a reduced cost. Rust Ewing Insurance knows that each of our clients is one of a kind, and protecting their sight is an important matter. That's why we offer a wide range of vision care plans to fit your business and personal needs.
Life and Accidental Death & Dismemberment Insurance
Rust Ewing Insurance is very active in the group and individual Life insurance marketplace. Whether you are researching Life insurance for an individual, a group plan, or a 1000+ employee corporate plan, our agency is available to assist you. We can help you evaluate your needs, survey the marketplace, prepare side-by-side plans and price comparisons, and then help you implement the best plan[s] to meet your objectives.
Many employees who suffer a short-term injury face real concerns about surviving without a steady paycheck. According to the National Safety Council's report for 2008, nearly 70% of disabling injuries occur off the job. Under these circumstances, Worker's Compensation will not cover any lost wages, medical, or hospital costs. And research shows, on average, employees who rely on personal savings are unable to sustain out-of-work expenses beyond the first month.
Having the right insured plan can replace up to 60% of income lost due to injury or sickness. Our agency focuses on Short-Term Disability as the first step to gaining control of overall disability costs. A well-managed STD plan can help an employer identify, track and handle claims professionally and consistently. Active claim management through a fully-insured plan can help shorten the duration of disabilities through rehabilitation and return-to-work efforts, reducing your costs and preventing short term disabilities from becoming a long term issue.
Short-Term Disability - Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q: Will our Worker's Comp cover short term claims?
A: 70% of disabilities occur off the job. These are not covered by Worker's Comp.
Q: Doesn't State Disability pay for short term disabilities?
A: Yes, but SDI only pays 55% of income up to $334 per week. An STD plan will pay on top of SDI and can be designed with higher percentages and maximums to replace a larger amount of income.
Q: Does an insured STD plan cover pregnancies?
A: Yes, pregnancies are covered as any other disability.
Q: How often do short term disabilities occur?
A: The average occurrence of STD claims is 65 per 1,000 insured lives each year.
When faced with an employee who has developed a long term disability, employers who elected to not offer insurance are confronted with several crucial decisions. Choices must be made whether to continue to pay all or part of a salary, offer unpaid leave, or even to terminate employment. The outcome can be unfortunate for both the employee and the entire company. A managed Long-Term Disability plan allows an employer to outsource these difficult decisions surrounding a disabled employee to disability experts. An insured LTD plan will replace nearly 67% of an employee's income, till the age of 67, in situations where catastrophic illness or injury exists. Along with income protection, most disability plans offer rehabilitation and return-to-work services that are essential to the recovery of disabled employees. The goal of Long-Term Disability insurance is to financially protect and return disabled employees to a healthy and productive life.
Long-Term Disability - Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q: How many people really use their LTD plan?
A: There is a 1 in 5 risk that a 35 year old will be disabled for 90 days or more before age 65. You are more likely to become disabled than to die during your working years.
Q: How much will LTD cost the company?
A: The general rule is that a fully insured LTD plan will cost a company about one half of one percent of the company's monthly payroll.
Q: Will an LTD plan pay a disabled employee who returns to work on a part-time basis?
A: Yes, most LTD plans will pay an employee who is limited from performing all of their job functions, and has suffered a 20% or more loss of income as a result.
Q: What are the most common income replacement percentages?
A: Most companies implement a plan that replaces from 60% to the highest percentage available, 66 2/3%, of an employee's income in the event of a disability.
Our agency assists individuals, age 65 and older, to improve his or her current coverage, or reduce out-of-pocket costs. To ensure our clients' overall health and wellness needs are met, we conduct an extensive evaluation on their current status, provide education on the various options and then prepare a customized program that achieves our clients' healthcare goals and financial requirements. Whether it is a Managed Care Plan or a Traditional Supplement, helping our clients' better understand their Medicare benefit options is our primary concentration. We also assist in Part D and Coverage. To find the Medicare plan that is right for you, contact us today.
- Traditional, Advantage & Supplement Plans
- Plan Designs for Individuals & Couples
- Instant Quote
- Simplified Application
When an employee and/or its dependents incur an unexpected life change, the treatment, recovery period, and financial matters can consume the thoughts and energy of your employees. Without insurance protection and financial security, the life change can lower company productivity and transfer more requirements and responsibilities to additional coworkers, including your Human Resource Management.
Voluntary Worksite plans are elective insurance products offered to the employees at no cost to the employer. These benefits allow employees to satisfy gaps of coverage outside of the core benefits plan, as well as manage their benefits portfolio based on individual need.
Rust Ewing Insurance has a fundamental role with employers to provide access to voluntary and worksite benefits that offer a cushion of financial protection. To the employee, the workplace has become the central point of access to receive this important and affordable voluntary coverage.
Personal Accident coverage is supplemental insurance used to reimburse a portion of actual expenses paid. Benefits vary and may include the loss of life, accidental dismemberment, loss of speech, hearing, or sight, loss due to coma, or loss due to complete disability.
Critical Illness coverage is a medical insurance plan that provides a lump-sum benefit designed to help alleviate the financial burden following diagnosis of a critical illness or condition as defined in the policy. Cancer plan benefits can be utilized for medical and non-medical expenses, which may include, but are not limited to; loss of income, transportation, lodging, child care, and increased living expenses as defined by the policy.
Disability is an insurance product designed to replace a percentage of your gross income, on a tax-free basis, in the event that an illness or disability prevents the employee from earning an income. Benefits are paid directly to the insured in either weekly or monthly instalments dependant on policy terms.
"COBRA" stands for Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1985. COBRA is the federal health care continuation law. COBRA requires that if an employee or other "qualified beneficiary" loses employer-provided health coverage due to termination of employment or another specified "triggering event," the group health plan must offer continued health care coverage to the qualified beneficiary. The qualified beneficiary may be (and typically is) required to pay the full cost for the coverage. COBRA coverage has limited duration. In most cases, the maximum COBRA period is 18 or 36 months from the date of the qualifying event. COBRA effects groups of 20 OR MORE EMPLOYEES. Employee count includes all full and part time employees on the payroll.
HR / Payroll Administration
Our agency's HR Consulting services assist clients with strategically integrating HR processes, programs and practices into their daily operations. Our primary function is to maximize the client's performance related to human resources by introducing or marketing "best practice" products or services. To accomplish this, our consulting services may include a needs assessment or audit to prepare appropriate recommendations or proposals, facilitate the creation and implementation of an action plan and coordinate cross-functional HR teams to assist clients with the creation and execution of performance improvement corrective plans, programs or processes.
HR Consulting and Administration benefits provide consultation and coaching services to administrators, managers and supervisors on issues such as:
- Workplace culture, communication and organizational design
- Policy interpretation and achieving organizational goals
- Performance management and disciplinary actions
- Work group interactions and conflict management strategies
- Strategic planning and development of best practices in organizational management
Important Information for Employers:
In 2010, the federal government passed the Affordable Care Act (ACA), creating new marketplaces and rules and regulations for group and individual healthcare plans. The passage of the law also ushered in new taxes, fees, and requirements for compliance for employers, insurance companies, and third party administrators. Changes in the industry started six months after passage and will continue until 2018, with the pivotal year being 2014-15. Below is information designed to give you a high level overview of the elements of the law with a focus on the years 2013, 2014 and 2015.
What Employers Should Be Doing Right Now
Build your team: the ACA is the largest social welfare legislation since Social Security. This should not be taken lightly or handled off the corner of your desk. Get help and Build Your Team! The team should be made up of the your:
- Licensed Employee Benefits Advisor
Each of these professionals should be well versed in employee benefits. Like physicians, they specialize. Be sure your insurance advisor is focused on employee benefits and has a good grasp of the Affordable Care Act.
- Plan the work and work the plan. The keystone of developing a plan is to know what needs doing. Understand the new compliance and notification requirements brought about by the ACA. Rust Ewing offers a compliance checklist to our clients as a part of our service. This checklist may be used to delegate tasks to members of your ACA team or other employees at your company.
- Determine your group size: Employer penalties do not kick in until a group has 50 or more full time and full time equivalent employees. There are certain ways to count your employees. Know what they are and test your company for the correct size. You may be surprised. Rust Ewing is prepared to help you in this effort.
- Plan a strategy for the future. This isn't a one year issue. The Affordable Care Act will change the offering of employee benefits permanently. Have a strategy and an action plan that will see you not only through the transition, but into your long term employee benefit policies and procedures. Understand the ramifications and opportunties under community rating, minimum essential benefits, actuarial value and funding. Rust Ewing is adept at working with our clients to develop strategies and goals to address all of these areas and more.
Comparative Effectiveness Fee (2012)
- This fee is charged to insurance carriers and Third Party Administrators (TPAs) and is designed to fund research to determine the effectiveness of various forms of medical treatment. The original fee of $1 per participant per year will increase to $2 per participant per year in 2013 and will remain in force through 2019.
- It is expected that the carriers and TPAs will pass these fees to their customers as a part of the overall premiums or plan costs.
Uniform Explanation of Coverage (2012)
- Employers must provide a uniform Summary of Benefits and Coverage (SBC) to all participants at the initial time of enrollment and during each subsequent annual enrollment. This must be done in a timely fashion, and penalties for non-compliance are steep. The structure of the SBC is defined in the law.
- In a fully insured environment, carriers will develop the SBCs and deliver them to the employer. The employer has a shared responsibility to distribute them on a timely basis to the employees. In a self-funded environment, the employer has the final responsibility to develop and distribute the SBC. Most self-funded groups will utilize a third party to generate the SBCs on their behalf.
Sixty-day Notice of Material Modification (2013)
- Employers must provide notice of any material modification in coverage at least 60 days prior to the effective date of modification other than the renewal. This is a part of the Uniform Explanation of Coverage and is in addition to the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) Summary Plan Description.
- Rust Ewing recommends the development of an ERISA Wrap Document to assure full document compliance.
Form W-2 Reporting of Value of Benefits (2013)
- Employers are responsible for reporting the total cost incurred for providing health care to employees. This is for reporting purposes only, and no taxes are associated with this report. This requirement begins in 2013 for the 2012 tax year and is only for employers who distributed 250 or more W-2s in the prior taxable year.
- Keep in mind that this requirement is based on W-2 count and not on covered employees. Employers should check with their payroll services to verify that this requirement is being met.
Cap on Health Flexible Spending Account Contributions (2013)
Employee contributions to employer-sponsored healthcare Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs) are limited to $2,500 in a calendar year.
Employer Notification Regarding Exchanges (2013)
- Employers must provide existing employees and new hires with information about the existence of a state or federal exchange. The plans in the exchange will include minimum essential benefits and be categorized by reimbursement levels. The levels will be designated as metallic plans: bronze, silver, gold, and platinum.
- Model notification has not yet been released.
Minimum Essential Benefits (2014)
- States must choose one of four methods of determining the minimum essential benefits plan. A plan must meet the minimum essential benefits for each state to be considered a qualified plan.
- Texas has declined to establish a minimum essential benefit plan and will default to the privately offered benefit plan with the largest enrollment.
Insurance Exchanges (2014)
- Every state is encouraged to set up a state-based health insurance exchange. If the state fails to set up an exchange, the federal government will set one up for the state as a federal exchange. Initially, the exchanges will be made available to individuals and small groups with fewer than 100 employees as part of two different exchanges: Individual and Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP) Exchanges. Plans will be offered according to the metallic plan categories.
- Premium Subsidies and Small Business Tax Credits are only available in the state and federal exchanges.
Premium Subsidies (2014)
- Subsidies are available in the exchange for individuals or families earning less than 400% of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL) who do not have access to health insurance at their workplace or where their employer does not offer an affordable health plan.
Small Business Tax Credit (2010/2014)
- This tax credit is for groups with fewer than 25 employees with average annual wages of less than $50,000. This tax credit has been in place for all groups since 2010, but it will only be available to groups in the exchange in 2014.
Free Rider Penalty (2015)
- Employers with more than 50 employees will be required to offer minimum essential benefits to all full-time employees who work 30 or more hours per week. If an employer does not offer this coverage and at least one full-time employee receives coverage through the exchange, the employer will be assessed a penalty of $2,000 for each full-time employee (minus the first 30).
- If an employer provides coverage but the coverage is deemed to be unaffordable, the employer will be assessed a $3,000 penalty for each employee who obtains a subsidy through the exchange to a maximum of $2,000 for all full-time employees in the group.
No Pre-existing Condition Exclusions (2014)
- Group health plans and individual insurance policies are required to eliminate pre-existing condition exclusions completely.
- Note: Pre-existing condition exclusions were eliminated for individuals who are younger than 19 years of age in 2010 and will be abolished for all others in 2014.
Limit on Employee Out-of-pocket Expenses (2014)
- Group health plans, both fully insured and self funded regardless of size, must limit the out-of-pocket expenses to $5,950 for individuals and $11,900 for families. For small groups, deductibles cannot be greater than $2,000 for individuals and $4,000 for family coverage.
Individual Mandates (2014)
- The ACA requires individuals to obtain minimum essential benefits for themselves and their dependents or face penalties.
No Annual Limits (2014)
- Group health plans may no longer include annual limits on essential benefits for participants.
Ninety-day Limit on Waiting Periods (2014)
- Group health plans may not impose a waiting period longer than 90 days for healthcare coverage.
Nondiscrimination Rule (2014)
- Health reform will adopt Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act's (HIPAA's) rules, in which group health plans may not discriminate as to benefits or coverage based on health status.
Community Rating (2014)
- Health insurance carriers providing individual or small group policies covering 100 or fewer individuals must abide by strict community rating rules with premium variation only for age, tobacco use, levels of coverage (single and family), and geographic rating areas. Experience or rates based upon medical costs of a group or individual will be prohibited. This policy is also applicable to large group policies offered through the exchange.
Transitional Reinsurance Program Fee (2014)
- This fee will only be assessed from 2014 through 2016 and is imposed upon carriers and third-party administrators. This fee is intended to stabilize premiums in the individual marketplace. The exact amount of the fee is not yet known; however, it is estimated to be $50-$100 per member each year.
Health Insurance Tax (2014)
- This tax is a fixed dollar amount to be distributed across all carriers based upon the carriers' net premiums. The tax will begin at $8 billion in 2014, rise to $14.3 billion in 2018, and increase according to an index based on net premium growth thereafter.
Automatic Enrollment (2014)
- Employers with more than 200 employees who maintain one or more group health plans must automatically enroll full-time employees (30+ hours per week) as they become eligible for coverage (subject to any waiting period). The employer must give affected employees notice of the automatic enrollment procedure and offer an opportunity to opt out.