Carrier News

BCBS Annual Enrollment Period for Small Business Extended

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas has decided to extend the annual enrollment period for small business for two additional months. The new, extended period will last from Nov 15, 2014 to Feb 15, 2015, which matches the individual market open enrollment period. The extension applies only to policies written outside of the SHOP.

Beginning last year, ACA regulations established a one-month open enrollment period—Nov 15 through Dec 15—for health insurers to accept small group submissions without regard to participation or contribution levels. With BCBS’s new extension, employers can select Jan-Mar effective dates.

Blue Directions for Small Business Private Exchange Helps Compare Financial Options

Blue Directions offers a platform that can help your clients choose group plans, define and set employer contribution, and provide your clients’ employees with a platform to enroll in group coverage. Employees can choose between group and individual health plans. Individual plans cannot be purchased with pre-tax contributions made by the employer or employee. However, BCBS is offering this option for employees who may wish to not accept the group health plan offering. Individuals may be eligible for a subsidy on the Health Insurance Marketplace and will have to determine their eligibility through the Marketplace. The “No Contribution” and “No Participation” options are only available for groups applying for coverage during the annual enrollment period.

Paperwork deadlines for Blue Directions plans, during the annual enrollment period are:

  • Dec. 10, 2014, for a Jan. 1, 2015, effective date
  • Jan. 10, 2015, for a Feb. 1, 2015, effective date
  • Feb. 10, 2015, for a March 1, 2015, effective date

Current submission guidelines remain for all plans purchased outside of Blue Directions.

via Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas.

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