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Small businesses that want to participate and provide healthcare coverage to their employees will need to meet certain requirements. One of the benefits of going through SHOP, the Small Business Health Options Program, is that it does not have a fixed open enrollment period. The employers will be able to set their own open enrollment period any time of the year they wish. In addition, you may be able to have your company qualify for small business tax credits, which can help you save on the overall cost of providing healthcare coverage for your employees.
What Are the Requirements?
To be eligible for SHOP, the employer must have 50 or fewer full-time employees. In 2016, this number will increase to 100 employees. The employer also needs to be willing to provide coverage for all of their full-time employees. If they have a principal business address located in Kentucky, they need to offer coverage to all full-time employees. If they have a worksite in Kentucky, even if it is not their primary business location, they need to offer coverage to all full-time employees.
The employers will then be able to fill out their application form so they can start to look for plans available through SHOP.
Small Business Tax Credits
One of the biggest benefits for small businesses that use SHOP is the potential for tax credits. These credits can help to reduce the cost of providing coverage for the employees. However, not all companies will be able to meet the requirements. Let’s look at those requirements to see if your business might quality.
The business will need to have 25 or fewer full time employees. In addition, you will need to pay for at least 50% of the premium for the employees. The group average annual wage also needs to be less than $50,000 for your company to qualify for tax credits.
To get a better idea of the tax credits that your company might be able to receive, you can go to the interactive calculator for Small Business Tax Credits, which is available at Kynect.ky.gov. The actual amount of tax credits your business might be able to receive through the program will vary based on a number of factors including the average annual wage and the number of employees.
The tax credits will be worth 50% of the amount of your contribution to the employee’s premium. This has the potential to substantially reduce the amount of money you are spending on providing health care.
Benefits of the SHOP and Kynect System
You will be able to continue working with your current insurance agent if they are a part of Kynect. In addition, you can choose several different insurance companies for your company based on your needs, and Kynect will take care of the billing. This means you will only have a single bill to worry about each month.
Employers will not have to worry about meeting the open enrollment requirements for individuals and families. There is no set open enrollment period, so you can enroll when it makes the most sense for your company.
An employer who wants to have happy employees will provide health coverage. With SHOP, it makes it easier than ever to find the right plans. The possibility of having tax credits helps to make it an even better option.