A lot is going on in farm country right now from the weather, to possible trade conflicts with China and the far east and an depleting ag economy that is having a lot of producer scratching there heads trying to figure out how do we win in the health insurance game? In the last couple of year my agency has been able to help producers win in this game and provide meaningful solutions that help the bottom line, and keep there operations moving. Lets face it health insurance is not a really exciting thing to talk about, but it is a necessary thing in the lives of farmers and there families. Producers have been faced with 6 years of huge rate increases on individual health plans and the trend of buying those individuals plans have come to a head. Many producers have tried to buy plans on the health insurance marketplace, well that has or hasn't worked for them because of the tax subsidy which asks you to guess your yearly income. We are living in a time of big change when it comes to health insurance and farmers are a small group of individuals that are getting squeezed in the middle of this mess, your not big enough to get great deals from the insurance carriers and all your options opened to you, but your are big enough where the individual health plans and the tax subsidy information wont work for you.
So how can the farmer win in the health insurance game? Ask yourself these three things
1. How is my operation structured (is your operation a corporation or LLC and do you take a W-2 or 1099)
2. Do I have employees that are W-2 or 1099
3. How often is my family using the health insurance we now have in place, and is it worth the cost
Ok now let me break this down for you and show you how this can be beneficial to your operation
1. Many farming operation are now structured as corporations, meaning that this family could potentially benefit from group health insurance plans, in many states there is one or two carriers for individual health insurance, but did you know that in many states there are at least 4 to 5 carriers in the group market offering a variety of plans and price points.
2. Many farming operations also have full time employees now, by offering benefits to those employees the farmer could potentially keep employees for longer periods of times. Studies have shown that when employees are presented with a variety of health benefits options they are more dedicated to that employer and more willing to stay with that employer for a long period of time.
3. This is the golden question of them all, majority of the families in today's world are keeping plans that just don't fit there families needs and wants. Many families have seen in the last several years premiums increase by 40 to 50% every year on very rich benefits health plans, however when you dive deep down into the specifics those very benefit rich plans may not make a whole lot of sense at the end of the day.
As we continue to work on improving health care in this country one thing is for sure, we still have a very bumpy road ahead of us and finding solutions to your operations needs and families needs are what we are all about providing. Many farmers have been faced with enough worries right now why should health insurance be another?