Covered California is California’s health exchange, which allows individuals and small businesses to shop for brand-name health insurance coverage at rates that are federally subsidized. The marketplace has two distinct programs: Individual Health Plans and Covered California for Small Business. For small businesses in California looking to provide their employees with medical coverage options, CCSB is highly advantageous.
Continue reading to learn all there is to know about Covered California for Small Business, including who is eligible, the available health insurance companies and health plan options, and how the program can benefit your business and your employees.
Formerly called the Small Business Health Options (SHOP) program, Covered California for Small Business (CCSB) is one of Covered California’s two programs. Through this program, small businesses in California are able to utilize a competitive marketplace to find health insurance for their employees that fits both their and their employees’ budget.
Covered California offers a number of services and advantages to small business in California, including:
In order to be qualified to shop for and purchase group health insurance coverage through Covered California for Small Business, your business must meet the following guidelines:
In other words, you are eligible for CCSB if your small business has 100 or less full-time-equivalent employees. Though, you must have at least one full-time-equivalent employee. So, what exactly is a full-time equivalent employee?
A full-time-equivalent (FTE) employee is technically not an actual employee, but rather a calculation that focuses on hours worked instead of number of employees. So, if an employer has a 40-hour work week, employees that work 40 hours a week are deemed one full-time equivalent employee. However, you could have three physical employees, but only one FTE depending on the hours they work.
If you are a sole-proprietor, meaning you are the owner and the only employee of your small business, you are not eligible for Covered California for Small Business. Instead, you’ll want to look into obtaining coverage through Covered California’s individual marketplace.
If you have more questions about CCSB eligibility, don’t hesitate to get in touch with one of our experienced, professional insurance brokers.
If you qualify for Covered California for Small Business, there are six health insurance companies to choose from, offering year-round acceptance in the small business program. Your employees are able to compare and choose health plans at a range of price points, which helps ensure that they get the coverage they need at a rate they can afford.
The six health insurance companies available through Covered California for Small Business are as follows:
Keep in mind that the plan selection options for each of the aforementioned companies varies based on the region in California.
With Covered California for Small Business, there are four levels of coverage for employers to choose from: Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Platinum. Each level also has numerous plan options. As the employer, you choose the level(s) of coverage that you want to offer and then your employees are free to select any health plan within those levels. By offering multiple levels, you make it easier for your employees to find a health plan that suits their needs and their budget.
Sometimes referred to as “metal levels” the categories of coverage are based on how costs are split between the insurance company and the insured. For each level, the plan covers a specific percentage of the total annual costs for care, and your employee is responsible for the rest.
Health plans that are a part of the Coverage California for Small Business marketplace must offer at least one plan from the four coverage levels.
Covered California for Small Business is an incredibly helpful way for qualified employers to find the best health insurance for their employees. Once you find out that your small business is eligible for CCSB, you choose the level of coverage and how much you want to contribute to your employee’s premiums. Then, both you and your employees get to choose the ideal health plan.
CCSB gives you the option to choose from a range of PPO and HMO plans from Kaiser Permanente, Oscar, Blue Shield of California, Sharp Health Plan, and Health Net. The program delivers access to the most comprehensive network of physicians and hospitals in the state of California.
Advantages for Your Business:
Advantages for Your Employees:
Have more questions about Covered California for Small Business, whether or not you qualify, and what options are available to you? We can help. Contact us now to get in touch with one of our experienced, professional insurance brokers!
Todd Taylor, oversees most of the marketing and client administration for the agency with help of an incredible team.
Todd is a seasoned benefits insurance broker with over 35 years of industry experience. As the Founder and CEO of Taylor Benefits Insurance Agency, Inc., He provides strategic consultations and high-quality support to ensure his clients’ competitive position in the market.
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