Dec 14, 2018
Small Business Health Benefits in Canada | All About the Chambers Plan
Submitted by BP Group Solutions
Owning and operating a business is no easy feat. Every day presents a new opportunity or brings a new challenge. Taking advantage of opportunities means having the right people in place in the right positions. Attracting fresh, new talent while retaining their most valued employees is a challenge, especially for small businesses. According to a 2016 Canadian Health Survey, over 75% of respondents wouldn’t consider a job unless health benefits were included.
Small Business Health Benefits in Canada
Small businesses have to be expert financial managers in order to keep their expenses low and profits high. Some business owners might think that it’s impossible to get affordable health benefits for their employees. While there are a variety of private companies that offer small health benefit programs for small businesses they are not the only choice. The Chambers of Commerce Group Insurance Plan in Canada also offers a variety of health benefits to small businesses and their employees including:
- Extended Health Care Benefits
- Critical Illness
- Employee Assistance Program (EAP)
- Life/Accidental Death and Dismemberment
- Business Overhead Expense (BOE)
- Chambers Plan® Group Retirement Solution
Who Can Join the Chambers Plan®?
The list of Canadian firms that are already insured under the Plan exceeds 30,000, making it the most popular employee benefits program in the country. One of the reasons for this is that there are no restrictions on what types of companies can join, including not-for-profit organizations. The only requirement is that the company has to be a member of a local Chamber of Commerce or Board of Trade.
Why Choose the Chambers Health Plan®?
Small and medium sized businesses have to carefully consider all their options when it comes to choosing a health plan for their employees. They have to look at how the plan will be administered, the time it will involve, costs, and above all how employees will benefit. The Chambers Group Health Plan has been serving Canadian companies and their employees for more than 40 years and tens of thousands of businesses rely on it. Here are some other reasons to consider the Chambers Health Plan for your business:
Access to Chambers Plan® Advisors
It can be confusing to decide which health plan is best for an organization and its employees. A Chambers Plan® advisor will help take care of everything, and offer support every step of the way. They work with business owners to design a program that meets their employee’s needs while being mindful of budget concerns. After the Plan is in place, they help field employee questions and make administration of the plan easier and less time-consuming.
Business owners have a lot on their plates already and managing a complex employee benefits plan isn’t appealing. Hiring an in-house plan administrator isn’t always feasible for businesses on a tight budget. Therefore, they need a program that’s simple to manage, reducing the time it takes to administer the benefits program. The Chambers Plan® was designed to be simple to use and beneficial for all:
- Quick Initial Set-Up
- Simple Plan Administration
- Easy-to-Use Forms and Documents
- Fast Online Claim Processing
A major concern with health programs is the potential for group insurance premiums to rise out of control and out of reach. The Chambers Plan pools premiums and rates are based on the average of the claims submitted by similar firms. This keeps premiums low and predictable so that businesses don’t have to worry about unexpected increases that can wreak havoc on their budgets.
Unlike corporate health benefit companies who operate for a profit, the Chambers Plan is a non-profit. There are no massive executive bonuses or multi-million dollar profit reports. In other words, those who pay premiums simply make money for the insurers and benefits companies. Instead, the Chambers Plan keeps any surplus remains in the fund, which helps keep premiums low and ensures coverage for all.
Implementing the Chamber Plan has some positive tax benefits for both employers and employees. Employers can deduct the employee health plan premiums they pay from their income taxes which lowers their taxable income and reduces their tax liability. Likewise, the premiums that employees pay for their coverage is tax-free income meaning they pay lower income taxes. It’s a win-win.
Easy Online Access
An effective health plan is one that is easily accessible to owners, administrators, and employees. The Chambers Plan offers a My-Benefits online portal that can be accessed from anywhere using a smartphone or other connected device. Plan administrators and owners can view their billing statements online, enroll new employees, update employee data, and get help with calculating payroll deductions. Employees can use the site to access their plan, view and submit claims, read important information, and a variety of other tasks.
Fast Claim Reimbursement
Filing a claim and waiting for payment to come through can be a frustrating experience.Employees don’t want to wait for weeks to be paid for a claim, they need their money right away. The Chambers Plan offers members a fast payout, often within 48 hours of submission. It’s convenient as well. Claims can be direct deposited into the employee’s bank account making administration even easier. What’s more, some services can be paid on the spot through participating providers.
Guaranteed Acceptance and Renewals
The Chamber Benefits Plan has Guaranteed benefits for groups as small as one to two lives.
- No health questions
- No medical questions
- No waiting period Coverage is guaranteed and effective the first day of the month.
- Plans automatically renew each year as long as the business continues to pay premiums.
The Chambers Plan goes beyond offering group benefits. It can be thought of as an all-inclusive portal for employers and their workers aimed at helping them live a healthy life. In fact, there are several advantages for both employees and businesses at no additional cost. Access to the Chamber Plan’s health and wellness site, Best Doctors® and Business Assistance Service are all included.
Businesses that offer health benefits to their employees have an easier time attracting new talent and retaining valued employees. Choosing and administering a health plan can be a daunting task. A company like BP Group Solutions helps business owners make this important decision by offering sound advice based on years of experience. If you have questions about the Chambers Plan, contact us and we’ll be happy to help you get the answers you need so you can make the best decision for your employees and company.