Friday, August 17, 2007


California group health insurance can be a good way to attract, reward, and retain employees. California group health insurance can be an integral part of any company benefits package. There are many options available to the CA employer/business owner searching for health insurance. From individual health insurance within some type of Health Reimbursement Arrangement (HRA) Medical Reimbursement Plan (MRP) to a full fledged group health insurance plan there are a lot of avenues to investigate.

There are many different type of California group health insurance plans and network configurations. There are Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) type networks, Preferred Provider Organization (PPO) type networks, and Point Of Service (POS) type networks. As far as plan design goes there are many options including Copay plans (with copays for Doctor’s visits and prescriptions and sometimes for things like emergency room visits and ambulatory services – all depending on the plan specific) plain deductible plans, and Health Savings Accounts (HSA’s).

It is important to note that as an owner or a self employed individual with schedule C income the self employed health insurance premiums deduction should still be available regardless of whether you choose a group health insurance plan or an individual health insurance. Consult your tax advisor and insurance professional for more details.

California health insurance companies underwrite CA group health insurance plans much differently than they do CA individual health insurance plans. For instance, the health criterion for being approved for an individual health insurance policy is much stricter than in a group health plan. If you have serious health problems than many health insurance companies will decline you for coverage with one of their individual health plans.

However, on the group health insurance side there are some important differences. In California, health insurance companies may limit their coverage for usually a year for an employee that has a health issue is deemed to have a pre-existing condition. After the one year time period is elapsed then the insurance company must provide coverage for this pre-existing condition. (Many health insurance companies define "pre-existing condition" as "a condition that an employee was diagnosed with, treated for or had medical advice concerning the condition six months prior to beginning coverage under a group health plan." - This can also be called a "look back" type plan).


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