Want to increase your bottom line? Offering voluntary benefits is an affordable strategy that helps your employees focus more on work and stay productive by providing a financial safety net i.e., the ability to pay bills, have savings and emergency funds set up, etc. in case of a major life event. Voluntary benefits are designed for everyday living and augment employer-paid health insurance. For example, most policies pay cash benefits directly to the insured to help pay for expenses that health insurance doesn’t cover, like travel, childcare and other unexpected bills related to illness.
Employees are more productive when they feel secure that their loved ones will be taken care of, in the event of illness or an untimely death. Thus, you should consider life insurance a key part of the benefit package for your employees. And, also a valuable tool in attracting top talent.
Whether employer paid or voluntary, a good life insurance policy provides for an employee’s final expenses, taxes, and mortgage. Additionally, it may even pay for their children’s education.
Permanent Life Insurance
This type of life insurance builds cash value which is sometimes used as collateral for loans, if needed. However, most employers only offer basic term life insurance (see below), but also offer permanent life insurance on a voluntary basis. Even so, employees appreciate the opportunity to widen their safety net.
This type of life insurance does not build cash value. However, it will pay a set amount to the named beneficiary upon the death of insured within the stated term. Additionally, some policies may also make payments upon terminal or critical illness.
Employees always appreciate dental & vision coverage as part of the benefits package. We offer both dental and vision as part of the employer sponsored package or on a voluntary basis.
Studies have shown that regular dental exams help employees to stay healthier and more productive in the work place. Additionally, you can detect serious underlying conditions such as heart disease and diabetes, through regular dental exams. In fact, the National Association of Dental Plans and the Centers for Disease Control have performed studies that show that employees with dental insurance have better attitudes and are less likely to suffer from depression, a common condition in today’s fast-paced world.
Dental insurance offers a variety of diagnostic, preventative care and corrective services. This includes cleanings, exams, x-rays, fillings, root canals, orthodontia for children, and emergency care while traveling.
Similar to dental policies, vision plans are inexpensive and save employees money on routine eye care. Examples of care include exams, eyeglass frames and lenses, contacts, and even discounts on procedures like LASIK. Additionally, monitoring your eye health with regular exams helps to prevent serious eye diseases like glaucoma and cataracts. In addition, regular eye exams help to detect early stages of diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol.
Accidents can happen anytime. Accident insurance helps to protect employees from financial hardship due to a great deal of medical and out-of-pocket expenses that follow accidental injuries. For example, emergency treatment, hospital stays, medical exams, transportation and lodging needs are just a few of the expenses that accident insurance can help cover. In fact, some policies can even pay benefits in as little as one day, based on time of claim submission.
National surveys have shown that Short Term Disability and Long Term Disability remain of high importance for most employees. Thus, savvy employers attract and retain top talent by offering both STD and LTD insurance as part of the employer paid benefit package or as a voluntary (worksite) benefit.
Short Term Disability
During the time an employee is unable to work due to a qualifying disability (illness or injury), STD generally allows for income payments to the employee to begin after about a two-week waiting period and will continue to pay the employee until he/she recovers or maxes out the benefits–usually anywhere between one month to two years, depending on the policy.
Long Term Disability
During the time an employee is unable to work due to a qualifying disability (illness or injury), LTD generally allows for income payments to the employee to begin after about a 90-day waiting period. However, it could be much longer depending on the policy. The policy will pay the employee far longer than STD–for a few years, up to age 65, or even for life.
Long-Term Care plans are becoming an increasingly common voluntary benefit offered by employers today. The prospect of long-term care is one of the most important issues your employees may have to face. The cost of long-term care is expensive and generally not covered by other employee benefits, disability or even Medicare.
If someone requires long-term care, it is not just an emotional strain but a financial one as well, impacting retirement savings and overall financial position. Savvy employers know that access to additional resources can increase employee productivity when confronted with managing long-term care situations. Long-Term Care plans demonstrate to your current and prospective employees that your company cares about them–increasing the ability to attract and retain the very best talent.
Most LTC plans are designed to provide benefits for care through nursing homes, assisted living centers, home health care and adult day care.
Employers can provide a base benefit while giving the employees the opportunity to “buy up” and obtain the level of coverage that they need for their families.
This special type of coverage can reduce the personal financial impact of the cost of fighting critical illnesses, helping to keep up with everyday bills through that process. Some key features include cash benefits paid directly to the employee and plans to fit different levels of coverage/budgets.
Unlike a traditional major medical plan that reimburses you or pays directly to a provider for approved hospital stays and medical care, a Hospital Indemnity Plan pays a lump-sum payment directly to the insured. The cash payment helps with out-of-pocket expenses and covers you when you are off work due to a hospital stay. The coverage is usually a set amount per day, per week, per month, or per visit depending on the benefit level selected.
A Gap plan provides benefits that supplement a major medical and comprehensive benefit package. It works by paying a significant amount of the deductible on a major medical plan. More specifically, the additional benefits help to cover out-of-pocket expenses related to coinsurance, co-pays and deductibles for inpatient and outpatient services. For example, if you have a $5,000 deductible on your major medical plan, gap coverage could pay up to $4,000 of that deductible.