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Meet ICHRA: The Rising Star on The Health-Care Benefits Stage

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An Individual Coverage Health Reimbursement Arrangement (ICHRA) is an affordable way for employers to provide employee health-care benefits. With an ICHRA, you can reimburse your employees tax-free for their individual health insurance and medical expenses, rather than buying health insurance for them.

Five Primary Benefits of ICHRA

1) Better cost control. An ICHRA allows you to set your benefit budget and stick with it. No surprises from year to year.

2) Plan customization. Rather than accepting a one-size-fits-all plan from one insurance company, you can design your own plan by defining which employees are eligible and establishing reimbursement limits by employee groupings, such as full-time, part-time, seasonal, etc.

3) Flexibility. You define a set monthly reimbursement allowance by dollar amount and type (i.e., insurance premium only or premiums plus IRS eligible health-related expenses, such as copays and prescription costs).

4) Convenience. You don’t need to worry about renewals, participation rates, annual premium networks, or time-consuming administrative hassles.

5) A better employee experience. Instead of trying to choose one cookie cutter plan for

everyone, you’ll empower your employees to choose their own health care plan, provider and coverage.

How It Works

Your employees purchase the individual health insurance plans that are best suited to their needs. They pay for premiums and other expenses and then submit claims for reimbursement. Once a claim is verified as valid, employees are reimbursed up to their accrued allowance.

Many small to medium-sized employers feel that offering traditional group health insurance to their employees is too costly. An ICHRA makes those benefits affordable for both you and your employees and helps you attract and retain the best quality workers in your field.

Mike Schifferle
is the director of Sales & Marketing at Value Point Associates (VPA), a national employer member association offering benefits to small and medium sized businesses. For more information, visit valuepointassociates.com.